FIT FOR CHARITY: Danielle Adair and Joanne Clark are training to take on the 96km Kokoda Track for a worthy cause.
FIT FOR CHARITY: Danielle Adair and Joanne Clark are training to take on the 96km Kokoda Track for a worthy cause. John Mccutcheon

Girls shape up as they prepare to trek Kokoda Trail

IT seemed like a good idea at the time but Joanne Clark admits she might have bitten off more than she can chew.

When the Sunshine Coast girl and workmate Danielle Adair decided to raise some money for a worthy cause, they thought walking the Kokoda Track would be as good a way as any.

Now they have a matter of weeks to get into shape for the gruelling 96km trek that's broken many more experienced adventurers.

"It's quite daunting," Joanne admitted. "We don't really know what we're in for as neither of us have done anything like it before.

"Danielle's quite into fitness but I'm into sitting on the coach."

The girls both work at Safe Asbestos Management and decided to raise money for the charity Mates in Construction, after seeing construction workers become frustrated by fluctuations in the amount of work they get.

The charity will use the money to employ another support worker to help men and women in the construction industry who are struggling with depression.

Joanne, who works in human resources, said anything that helped men talk about their problems was worthwhile.

"With construction being a man's industry and men generally don't talk about their feelings, that makes it even more important, otherwise they wouldn't talk about it," she said.

"So this is giving them somewhere that they can go to talk about it and somewhere that they're not going to be judged and everybody is not going to know if you're not feeling great or you're feeling a bit down."

The girls are doing a 12-week training program designed to make them fit enough to walk 15km a day over steep terrain. It's meant they aren't seeing much of family and friends.

"It's quite difficult because we've got all this money to raise and then the training on top of that, plus we both work full-time," Joanne said.

The trek will take place in September and the girls' biggest fundraiser will be at the Alex Bar and Grill on July 9.

For information contact Joanne on 0413 958 169 or Danielle on 0414 559 504.

If you or someone you know is struggling with depression, call Mates in Construction on 1300 642 111 or if you're not in the construction industry, call Beyond Blue on 1300 224 636.


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