An interesting coincidence— I met a guy on Facebook named Elpidophoros, whose name in Greek mans “bearer of hope” who together with his girlfriend Dora, want to do just that— bring hope to so many people.
After a few email exchanges and a wonderful Skype— I started to realize just how crazy Elpidophoros was.
He and Dora have been living and working in South Africa for a few years now. Victims of the Greek financial crisis, they, like so many tens of thousands of other young Greeks left for work— spreading throughout the world to far away places.
Well now, Dora and Elipidophoros want to return home and this in and of itself is a great thing.
But the way they’re planning to do it. It’s the stuff fairytales are made of.
Instead of buying a ticket— non-stop and the most direct route— Cape Town to Athens Eleftherios Venizelos International Airport, these crazy kids have concocted a plan to take a six month journey home, traversing the African continent from south to north, meeting people along the way and volunteering in various capacities at institutions, orphanages and other charitable endeavors— and most importantly, documenting the entire experience on camera.
The journey will take six months and will bring them through 11 African countries across 10,000 miles. They plan to take public transportation along the way— busses, hitchhiking and even hiking through some of the roughest areas of the world, in search of one thing— human connectivity. They won’t sleep in hotels, opting instead for hospitality by strangers or a tent, which they will carry with them just in case.
They’ve already begun connecting with people who will welcome them and assist along the way— including many Greeks, who live and work in far away African countries. What’s heartwarming about these kids is that while so many of their contemporaries waste away their existences in search of nothing but financial gain, and absolutely no meaning out of life at all, these kids (Dora and Elpidophoros are 25!) have placed so much value on human connectivity and expression— above all.
They are willing to sacrifice their time and energy to meet and connect with the world, while simultaneously sharing their experiences through the media of film and social media.
They will feature orphanages and other institutions doing important work in Africa and will bring important awareness on initiatives that we normally don’t have on our radars in our comfortable Western existences.
When I think of what Dora and Elpidophoros are doing, I can’t hope but recall that great Apple campaign of the 1990s that paid tribute to the “crazy ones” who were bold enough to think that they could change the world.
This is why I decided to help them with their campaign to raise funds, via their Afriquest Indiegogo fundraising campaign. What’s important here is that these funds won’t go to getting the comfort and luxury of airline tickets and hotel accommodations for their journey— they intend to use this money to help the charitable institutions they meet along the way.
I hope you will consider supporting the two crazy Greek kids. They deserve it. Even though their campaign has now achieved its goal of $4000, the more we give them, the more good they will be able to spread on their journey.
So… as that Apple advertisement says… “Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.”
Here’s to Dora and Elpidophoros, then… Indeed, two of the crazy ones.