6th Feb 2020
Twenty-year-old student Jesse Simpson knows from first-hand the fears that foster children face on a daily basis. He and his younger brother entered foster care just before Jesse’s 4th birthday and they have been raised together in a large, loving foster family for the past 16 years.
That is why Jesse is proud to be stepping out of his comfort zone as an ambassador for Altitude Shift, a thrilling abseiling experience – being held on 17 and 18 April – that is raising awareness and funds for Anglicare Victoria’s foster care programs.
“For me, foster care always meant so much more than just having a roof over my head and food on my plate. Foster care has really allowed me to be myself, to forget about my past and to achieve everything that I am capable of,” says Jesse.
Jesse graduated high school in 2017 and although he “aged out” of the foster care system two years ago, Jesse’s foster parents are continuing to support him as he studies Biomedicine at Melbourne University.
“This is a course I have dreamt of since I was 15. My intentions are to complete a medical degree and spend the rest of my life helping people.”
“When I am not studying, I lead a pretty active life. I have done sky-diving, rock climbing, rafting and enjoy playing basketball, cricket, soccer and field hockey.”
“But I have to confess that I’m a little nervous about abseiling 27 floors, which I’m sure is understandable. I’ve abseiled before but never from such a height. Having said that, I’m up for the challenge and pushing my own boundaries,” says Jesse.
There is no fitness level or experience requirements and Altitude Shift participants will receive full training and support as they go over the edge, descending 113 metres down the iconic St James Building in Bourke St.
“I think abseiling down a skyscraper is an incredibly visible way to highlight the challenges foster kids face on a daily basis.
Jesse knows that foster kids are forced through circumstance to step outside of their comfort zone on a daily basis. Every day they face the fear of being in a new home, the fear of being apart from family, friends and the fear of the future.
“I challenge others to get out of your comfort zone and join me at Altitude Shift 2020.”
Jesse’s fundraising link: https://donate.everydayhero.com/d/No6Dt2kjVQW-gQJ7dN-vKw/amount
For more information, visit Altitude Shift 2020