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HUMAN RIGHTS MUSICIAN SKATES 20,000 KM AROUND AUSTRALIA TO SUPPORT REFUGEE CHILDREN

By Emily Williamson

see children going to.”

An Australian musician has taken up the challenge to skateboard 20,000 km around Australia to raise $50,000 for Amnesty International’s Lost Children campaign.

Mr Kelly said making a difference to the lives of others is one of the most important things we can do in life, and this is why he plays music and why he is taking on this challenge.

Mr Ben Kelly, 38, is a Victorian farmer turned national touring and recording artist who spends around eight months each year touring around Australia.

“It seems that we are being trained to go for the money, to line our pockets and aim for success in the financial sense, but when it comes to morals and standing up for the rights of those less fortunate, we are less active than we need to be as a community.”

“I used to be a farmer in the Yarra Valley, but after suffering a nervous breakdown during the drought, I left the farm and became a national touring musician,” he said.

Mr Kelly believes that by showing others the impact that can be achieved when people stand together, it will inspire them to positively contribute to their communities.

Mr Kelly has now turned his focus onto contributing his musical talents to human rights, particularly the rights of refugee children being held in detention. “Amnesty’s Lost Children campaign focusses on the release and care of refugee children who have been cruelly incarcerated in detention centres,” he said.

The Melbourne-based musician will be selling his albums along the way to help fund his campaign.

“This is an issue that we cannot turn a blind eye to, we must protect these children’s futures and incarceration is the absolute last place we want to

“As an independent artist, this is a massive challenge, I have no financial backing but I am taking the plunge. 13

Mr Kelly will have a support van following him around the country with Go Pros filming the epic adventure. He will ride approximately 100 km per day and is calling for support from some Australian skateboarding companies to back this challenge and have their boards on show. Mr Kelly said he plans to have the boards signed by some well-known musician friends and then auction off the skateboards at the end of the tour. “The final wrap up show will be at one of Melbourne’s best theatre venues where I am to raise further funds and awareness to support the Lost Children Campaign.” To find out more and donate to Ben’s campaign. To find out more about the Lost Children campaign please click here.

AM-UNITY MAG EDITION 5

“People generally want to do the right thing and help others where possible, I think it’s in our nature to want to make a positive contribution.”

“I’ve cancelled all my shows for the rest of the year and my sole focus is to achieve this challenge, to raise the funds and awareness around this human rights issue and safely return to Melbourne in one piece.”

Profile for AM-UNITY Magazine

Edition 5  

Welcome to Edition 5 of AM-UNITY Magazine! In this issue we focus on Indigenous rights, refugee rights, and gender equity & diversity. Insid...

Edition 5  

Welcome to Edition 5 of AM-UNITY Magazine! In this issue we focus on Indigenous rights, refugee rights, and gender equity & diversity. Insid...

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