Super-supporter from the UK is just a few weeks into a 90-day journey that will take her the entire length of Britain – all for animals in need.
On a cold but blue-sky day in February a woman is standing alone with a backpack on England’s Bodmin Moor. Her brightly-coloured red hair makes her stand out from the muted colours of the moor as she speaks into her phone.
“The first week was agony”, she said. “I got seven blisters on the first day and had to walk on them for three days which was awful. I’m on the other side now and I’ve found my rhythm, but if anyone wants to do it – be prepared for the worst!”
This is Kat Savage, one of Animals Asia’s most dedicated supporters, and she is in the first few weeks of a mammoth walk in aid of Asia’s animals.
The 37-year-old singer from Cornwall is walking alone from England’s Land’s End all the way to John O’Groats in the far north-east of Scotland.
The journey is expected to take 90 days and will see Kat walk an astonishing 1,400 kilometres (870 miles).
Kat is using the walk to raise funds for Animals Asia’s programmes to end bear bile farming, improve animal welfare and stop the dog and cat meat trade in Vietnam and China – causes which have been close to Kat’s heart for quite some time.
Since finding out about Animals Asia’s work in 2012, Kat has raised money through sponsored Zumba sessions, recorded a song for the charity, and has even had the Animals Asia logotattooed on her back.
Speaking in 2015, Kat said:
“To me, finding Animals Asia gave me faith that the world wasn’t so horrific, that people did really care about animal welfare, and the fact that Animals Asia does so much to educate and inspire change in communities meant something so much to me”.
Kat is now more than 240 kilometres (150 miles) into her 90-day journey during which she will camp each night and eat food she has carried with her, while occasionally visiting local pubs for something warm.
Already she has suffered blisters and the aggravation of an old injury which caused her knee to swell up – but she remains undeterred and determined to reach her fundraising goal for the bears.
Animals Asia Founder and CEO, Jill Robinson MBE said:
“Kat has done so many amazing things for the bears that there is no doubting her commitment to ending cruelty. But it was still a huge surprise to learn she had taken on this massive challenge.
“Animals Asia is a charity founded on the goodwill of our supporters around the world. Without the support of these everyday heroes, not a single animal could be helped and there is no doubt that Kat is an absolute hero.
“I wish her every luck for a safe journey – especially now that there’s thick snow in areas across the UK – and we’ll be following her progress and cheering her along on social media every step of the way.”
Kat started her journey on February 4 and hopes to reach her destination by May 6.
If you’d like to support Kat’s amazing journey for the moon bears, donate on her Just Giving page and follow her on social media. She, and the animals she is working to protect, will be hugely grateful for the support.