School group hits the road to support Nic Mills' fundraising run

From left, Sean Swan, Sheldon Deacon-Hewlett, Liam Dodds, Hamish Carpenter, Gazel Cartoneros, Andrew King and Morgan ...

From left, Sean Swan, Sheldon Deacon-Hewlett, Liam Dodds, Hamish Carpenter, Gazel Cartoneros, Andrew King and Morgan Hill before their practice trek on Monday.

Pukekohe's Nic Mills is running to work on December 9. And it's not a simple jog down the road, as he'll be running a total of 43km.

Mills, who works at Sky TV,  will be lacing up his running shoes and making his way from Pukekohe to his Mt Wellington office.

It's not just for fun or fitness - as Mills will be raising money along the way for Starship Foundation, a social-profit organisation which helps care for young patients at the Starship Children's Hospital.

To support Mills on his fundraising journey, nine Pukekohe High School year 10 boys, known as The Lads, made a trek to Pokeno on Wednesday - along with their supervising teacher Greg Hughes.

Called the Starship Trek, the walk was to raise awareness for Mills' run.

"They were undecided as to what to do for their Te Ara Poutama Challenge week," said Hughes.

The Te Ara Poutama Challenge week is for all year 10 students to plan and carry out their own week of challenges. Each group must complete some community service during the week. 

"Their mates were doing week-long trips at the beach and adrenalin-fueled adventure-based learning," Hughes said.

"Then the group saw an article in Franklin County News about Pukekohe man Nic Mills who was going to run 43km to work on December 9. He wanted to raise money for Starship Children's Hospital and we asked him if we could piggy-back on his idea with a trek of our own."

The boys completed their own five-hour 16km mission to Pokeno on Wednesday, waving signs to support Nic Mills, and Hughes said they "finished with a well-earnt ice cream".

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The boys also took part in a practice 14km trek to Bombay and back on Monday - which took four hours, excluding breaks.

"The boys were encouraged by the number of truckies honking their support,"  Hughes said.

"When asked their reasons for doing this, some of the boys were doing it to 'get some exercise', one boy said that he 'wanted to challenge us so that the kids who were sick could be challenged to get through their sickness' and another boy said it 'made us feel equal in the team'."

"The aim is to raise awareness for Nic Mills' trek on December 9," said Hughes.

"Any donations go towards Nic's total." 

Visit if you'd like to donate to Nic Mills' cause.

 - Stuff

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