Leinster’s Dave Kearney has called on teams to tackle Oxfam Ireland’s TRAILTREKKER, a 50km and 100km challenge event which sees trekkers cross his native Cooley Peninsula to raise vital funds for people affected by poverty…

Teams will trek day and night through the Mourne Mountains, the Ring of Gullion and the Tain Way to complete a spectacular Triple Crown of their own on September 1st and 2nd.

As a Cooley Peninsula man, Kearney (23) is delighted that his homeplace is playing host to the event, which helps to transform people’s lives in Oxfam Ireland projects in Africa and elsewhere.

Speaking as an ambassador for Oxfam TRAILTREKKER, Kearney encouraged people to sign-up for the incredible experience: “Taking part in TRAILTREKKER is a challenge that will push you to your limits, but with the right training and teamwork anyone can take part.

“The Cooley Peninsula is absolutely spectacular. For anyone who doesn’t know the area well, this is an incredible opportunity to walk one of Ireland’s most scenic routes while also raising money for Oxfam Ireland that will help save lives.”

TRAILTREKKER has been described by past participant Michael Kinahan as “an awesome event. It couldn’t be done without the amazing support crew, super volunteers and wonderful organisation.”

Teams of four commit to raising €;2,000/£2,000 sponsorship, the equivalent of providing temporary shelter for 20 families in an emergency. Teams of two commit to raising €;1,000/£1,000 for Oxfam’s work, the amount needed to provide an irrigation scheme that supplies safe drinking water to 1,000 people.

The 100km challenge sees teams of four take on the trek in less than 36 hours. For 2012, participants can now compete as a team of two or four for the 50km event, which offers a less intense though still substantial challenge, to be completed in less than 16 hours.

Oxfam Ireland’s TRAILTREKKER is part of a growing worldwide phenomenon of 15 events in 12 different countries. Supported by global sponsor State Street Corporation, other partners that help to make TRAILTREKKER a success include 53 Degrees North, O’Briens, Louth County Council, Newry and Mourne District Council and Down District Council.

In 2012 over 22,000 people will collectively walk over 2.2 million kilometres (the same distance as walking around the world 55 times!), becoming great ambassadors for Oxfam’s work and aiming to raise over €;13.7 million/£11.3 million worldwide.

For more details about signing up for TRAILTREKKER 2012, call 01 635 0403 (ROI) and 028 9089 5972 (NI) or visit www.oxfamireland.org/trek