Oxfam Peacewalker is 42.2 kilometers to be walked by teams of four within a time limit of 10 hours. The 2018 edition will take place on Saturday 19th May, leaving from Messines. The funds raised by the teams will be used to finance Oxfam-Solidarity projects around the world. This year 120 teams are participating gathering 480 walkers in total. Almost 85,000 euros has been collected so far.
The 3rd edition promises to be a particularly festive occasion not just for the walkers but for everyone else who comes along. Free shows and entertainment, as well as a democratically priced bar, will be provided all day long on the Markt – the finishing line for Oxfam Peacewalker at the very heart of Messines.
A symbolic route
Oxfam Peacewalker takes place in the Westhoek region, where some of the bloodiest battles of the first world war were fought and where the commemoration events will end this year. Oxfam has chosen this location in tribute to the victims of 14-18 and also as a reminder that peace is fragile. The route of the walk passes through numerous symbolic sites including the Bluff (Palingbeek) where an impressive artistic installation containing 600,000 statues symbolizing the victims of the First War can be seen. In 2016, the participants of Oxfam Peacewalker helped to put the statues in place.
Solidarity with refugees
For the 2018 edition, a project led by Oxfam Solidary for the Western Saharan refugees will be highlighted. Each participant will be given an “identity card” of a Sahrawi refugee (at the same time as their number) and will learn that individual’s history on the route. In this way, light will be shown on this crisis which in fact is not very well known to the public.
The Brussels Times