Royal LePage Shelter Foundation Teams Up with Charity Challenge for Trek to Machu Picchu

@RLPShelterFdn @Royal_LePage

The Machu Picchu Challenge for Shelter will support shelters providing safety and hope for women and children fleeing domestic violence

TORONTO, Aug. 5, 2015 /CNW/ - For eight days this August, 60 Royal LePage agents, broker/owners, staff and family members from across Canada will hike at high altitude to raise much-needed funds and awareness to break the cycle of domestic violence. For the cause, they will endure zero temperature nights camping in tents and go without running water, electricity or cell phone service.

Heralding from seven provinces, all participants in the Machu Picchu Challenge for Shelter must raise at least $5,000 for the Royal LePage Shelter Foundation and cover their airfare to Peru and the majority of their trek costs. The participants range in age from 16-70 and consist of solo trekkers plus husband-wife, mother-son and mother-daughter teams. One Royal LePage agent is bringing her daughter as a 16th birthday gift and there is a couple that will be celebrating their 30th anniversary on the trek. Several participants in the Machu Picchu Challenge for Shelter experienced abuse in their past relationships or lived with family violence when they were growing up. All are motivated to make a difference in the lives of those currently experiencing abuse.

"We have watched our supporters do incredible things on behalf of the women's shelters in their communities. They've run marathons, climbed mountains, paddled long distances and created other personal challenges to demonstrate their commitment to our foundation", said Shanan Spencer-Brown, Executive Director of the Royal LePage Shelter Foundation.  "In that same spirit, we partnered with Charity Challenge, a company that offers international travel adventures to raise funds for charity, and chose the trek to Machu Picchu in Peru because it offers a physically demanding hike in a beautiful and remote location that is considered a "bucket list" experience." 

Trekkers will begin in the ancient Inca capital of Cusco where they will acclimate to the high altitude (11,400 feet) by visiting local Inca ruins and Spanish Colonial churches. Then, they will hike through the remote Lares Valley where they will glimpse a way of life that has remained unchanged for centuries. The Challenge trekkers will make their way to the Sun Gate at Machu Picchu, the "lost City of the Incas," via the Inca Trail where they will explore breathtaking pre-Columbian ruins nestled high in the Andes Mountains. In addition to collectively raising close to $400,000 for the charity, the participants have trained for months with regimens such as CrossFit and stair climbing to ensure they can meet the physical demands of hiking for long days at high altitude.   

Now in its 17th year, the Royal LePage Shelter Foundation supports 200 women's shelters and other domestic violence programs across the country, helping more than 30,000 women and children every year. It's also committed to funding violence prevention initiatives and education programs aimed at helping youth develop healthy relationships. Since its inception, the Royal LePage Shelter Foundation has raised more than $20 million. This is achieved with the help and support of generous Royal LePage agents, broker/owners, staff and business partners, along with members of the communities where Royal LePage operates. 

"Royal LePage Realtors® understand that a house is only truly a home when the people who live there are safe", said Ms. Spencer-Brown. "Unfortunately, for the thousands of women and children in Canada who experience domestic violence, this is not the case. On average, every six days a Canadian woman is killed by her current or former partner. Participants in the Machu Picchu Challenge for Shelter are going the extra distance to bring safety to abused women and children in their communities and to prevent such tragedies from taking place."

For more information or to sponsor a participant, visit:  Machu Picchu Challenge for Shelter

About Royal LePage Shelter Foundation
The Royal LePage Shelter Foundation is Canada's largest public foundation dedicated exclusively to funding women's shelters and ending violence against women and children. Through agent commission donations and the fundraising activities of the Royal LePage network, the foundation has raised more than $20 million to help provide a safe haven and new beginnings for more than 30,000 women and children every year. To break the cycle of violence, the Royal LePage Shelter Foundation also supports violence prevention and education programs. All funds raised by Royal LePage offices remain in their local community and because Royal LePage pays all administrative costs, 100 per cent of all money and effort goes toward this important cause. For more information visit: royallepage.ca/shelter

About Royal LePage
Serving Canadians since 1913, Royal LePage is the country's leading provider of services to real estate brokerages, with a network of over 16,000 real estate professionals in more than 600 locations nationwide. Royal LePage is the only Canadian real estate company to have its own charitable foundation, the Royal LePage Shelter Foundation, dedicated to supporting women's and children's shelters and educational programs aimed at ending domestic violence. In 2015, Royal LePage was named "Outstanding Corporate Citizen" by the Canadian Franchise Association. Royal LePage is a Brookfield Real Estate Services Inc. company, a TSX-listed corporation trading under the symbol TSX:BRE. For more information visit: royallepage.ca

SOURCE Royal LePage Shelter Foundation

For further information: Shanan Spencer-Brown, Royal LePage Shelter Foundation, O: 416-510-5750, C: 647-300-9208, shanansb@royallepage.ca

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