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Fearless Leaders Raise Over $65,000 In 10 Hour Bungy Marathon For Aotearoa’s Youth

When looking up at the country's tallest building, a sense of nervousness, adrenaline and a touch of self-doubt is bound to set in - especially if you’re supposed to bungy off it! At 328 metres tall and with a 192 metre free-fall bungy platform, Auckland's Sky Tower was certainly a big obstacle to overcome for over 50 business leaders last Thursday.

Nerves were at an all-time high (to say the least) for committed ‘Droppers’ taking part in Graeme Dingle Foundation’s famous ‘Drop Your Boss’. The annual fundraiser event is in its eighth year, and raises money to go toward the Foundation’s increasingly essential youth development programmes.

Gaining traction year after year, the 2023 event saw business leaders from a plethora of industries taking time from their busy schedules to take a massive leap in favour of youth. ZEIL, Bidfood, Kmart, KPMG, Lion, FujiFilm, Milford Asset Management, Farro and SAP were among the over 30 businesses involved and, with an added special twist for their efforts, the skyjump platform stayed open at night for the first time ever, allowing the leaders to take the plunge under the stars.

Graeme Dingle Foundation CEO Jo Malcolm-Black was among spectators on the day, not quite convinced to take the leap herself this year, she cheered everyone on and shared an important message with others gathering at the base of the tower.

“Sometimes it takes a leap of faith to do something extraordinary. This event is a fun adrenaline burst which can change the future for rangatahi” she said.

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“We support the development of over 27,000 young people each year aged 5-24 through our programmes. Our vision is that Aotearoa will be the best place in the world to be young. We still have a long way to go. In practical terms, events like this help us offer our services to tamariki and rangatahi” continued Malcolm-Black.

“Everyone who has donated to this event has directly contributed to ensuring every young person is empowered to overcome the obstacles they face. It’s quite fitting to see all of the wonderful adults overcoming their own fears in the spirit of our work. We are so appreciative”

Of course, with fundraising from the event hitting over $65,000 this was no easy feat. For the past months each ‘dropper’ has been working hard to collect donations in support of their jump for the cause. Farro CEO, Craig Williams was among those that fundraised and then felt the nerves kick in before falling 192 metres.

“I was nervous as hell!” he said, looking elated after landing at the bottom of the Sky Tower. “We've been talking about setting up a charity foundation through Farro for most of the year, and when this came up we thought - fantastic cause. Fiona came and said ‘oh we should support this’... and now I'm here” said Williams as his colleagues on the landing platform laughed.

Also among the fearless droppers was talented entrepreneur and global business leader, Anna Mowbray. You may know Mowbray as the Co-founder of toy giant ‘Zuru’, or perhaps from the recently published Business News article naming ‘10 of New Zealand's most powerful women in business’. With these accolades and many career accomplishments, Mowbray decided it was time to take on a new challenge by supporting Aotearoa’s young people. Sticking to her method of conquering obstacles head on, Mowbray states about the fundraiser “I feel completely petrified… but I’ll do it!” Later reflecting on the challenge she’d just signed up for, Mowbray said,“Oh no what have I gotten myself in for……eeeek. I am so nervous!”

Fresh off the back of launching ZEIL, her new jobseeker marketplace and ‘Tinder for jobs’, the Kiwi powerhouse has plenty on her plate but still managed to raise over $6,000 for taking the leap.

With fundraising pages open until the end of the month and over 27,000 students to back, the Foundation is asking for the public to dig deep and top up the hard work already done by their fundraisers.

“Keep an eye out for videos from the day and see the reactions of all of our droppers who gave us their time and energy for young people. Fundraising pages are still open so we’d love to see your donations keep coming in” said Foundation CEO Jo Malcolm- Black.

Keen to donate to the cause?

Visit givealittle.co.nz and search ‘Drop Your Boss Sky Jump 2023’

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