What time do I need to arrive?

Long Walk Home will take place on Friday 29 November. The event actually begins at 4pm, where all participants are encouraged to arrive to get registered, have their name ticked off and get ready. Speeches will begin at 4:30pm, then the walk will kick-off at 5pm on the dot! Please don't arrive at 5pm, as you will be behind all other walkers. 

How far is the walk?

The distance of Long Walk Home is 28km from Parramatta to Kings Cross. The route takes you along the Parramatta River through Parramatta, Rydalmere, Ermington, Meadowbank, Ryde, Gladesville, Hunters Hill, Drummoyne, Rozelle, Darling Harbour to Kings Cross. The walk will take place on a walking route that has been mapped out by organisers. Along the path, there will be signs/signals/volunteers instructing where to go, as well as three checkpoints where you can have a rest, have healthy snacks, fill up a water bottle and ask any questions.

Why 28KM?

In an average week, a person sleeping rough walks a distance of 28km looking for a place to sleep. This is the reality for some of the 116,000* people who are sleeping rough in Australia.

The event gives people the opportunity to put themselves the shoes of someone experiencing homelessness and to feel how challenging it would be to walk late into the night to look for a place to sleep.  

*ABS Census 2016  

How much to register?

Long Walk Home 2019 is FREE to enter, and is open to anyone who can participate. We encourage all participants to raise awareness, and help raise much-needed funds for Wayside Chapel so that they can continue to provide support to the people experiencing homelessness.

We encourage all individual participants to aim to raise $750 through sponsorships on their fundraising page and teams to raise $2,000 on their team page.

However please note, this event is 18+.

You can register here

How many people can you have in a team?

The maximum amount of people in a team is 4. Please note, on the day you can walk with whoever you like, it doesn't just have to be members of your team. 

How do I join a team?

To join a team, select the Team option in the first stage of the registration process. If you have created an individual profile but later want to join a team, you can simply search for the person or team on the homepage by clicking “Find a fundraiser or team” and typing in the team name or name of a person in that team.

How much money do I need to raise?

We encourage all individual participants to aim to raise $750 through sponsorships on their fundraising page and teams to raise $1,500 on their team page. However, if you do not manage to raise this money, you are still welcome to participate in the event on Friday, 29 November. $750 is simply a suggested goal which will enable Wayside Chapel to continue to support people experiencing homelessness, people who walk through their doors on a daily basis. We do encourage everyone to give fundraising a good go. The best way to fundraise is to reach out directly to your family, friends and network via email, SMS or social media post, telling them about Wayside Chapel and the work they do. If you need help with crafting your message, please email longwalkhome@thewaysidechapel.com.

What does my fundraising go towards?

All money raised will go to Wayside Chapel, a local Sydney charity who care and support people experiencing challenges such as homelessness, addiction, social isolation and mental health challenges.   

On the Walk

Where does the walk begin?

The starting point is Pavilion Flats – Parramatta Park, access via George Street Gates or Macquarie Street Gates (please note the start location is different to 2018 event) 

How do I get to the Long Walk Home start location from the Sydney CBD?

Catch a train to Parramatta station and walk 15 to 20 minutes from there to the start location (Pavilion Flats in Parramatta Park).

Will there be stations including healthy snacks, drink and first aid throughout the walk?

Yes, although you should plan on being fully self-sufficient for the entire walk (i.e. carry enough water and healthy snacks to last to the end). There will be three stations positioned along the 28kms offering limited healthy snacks, drink and basic first aid.

Where are the three checkpoints?

1. Melrose Park playground – Lancaster Avenue
2. Melrose Park (~8 km) Waruda Place
3. Huntley’s Cove (~16 km) Brett Park, Drummoyne – on the other side of Victoria Rd from Birkenhead Point (~21 km).

If you do not reach this location by 10.30pm you will be asked to withdraw from the Long Walk Home. At each checkpoint, there are healthy snacks, water tanks to fill drink bottles and volunteers to chat to and ask questions. There is also a designated first aid volunteer to offer basic first aid.

Can I complete the long walk home in relay form instead of walking the entire 28kms?

Yes. You’re welcome to split the walk up and organise this with your team members. If you choose to complete the walk relay-style, all members of the team must register at the start in Parramatta Park before splitting up. We recommend changeovers at the drink stations as these will be clearly marked.

Is the walking route closed to the public and exclusive to Long Walk Home participants?

No. We will be sharing the path with other users so please be careful of bikes, runners and other walkers. You should observe all road rules and be courteous to other members of public.

Note also that anyone from the public can register to participate in The Long Walk Home, as long as they register in advance.

What if I or some of my friends get lost?

Use your map to navigate. Use google maps on your phone (make sure your start with a fully charged phone). You will be provided with an emergency contact number to call if you are unsure where to go after you have used the above, or if you’ve lost touch with a member of your team and are unable to reach them.

What if I start feeling unwell or get injured during the walk?

If you feel seriously ill, experience chest pain, or get injured by a cyclist or motor vehicle, please get help by calling 000 immediately. Minor injuries such as blisters can be treated at one of the three food, water and first aid stationsYou will be provided with an emergency contact number if you get injured during the walk, to ensure we can assist and have a central point of coordination for all participants’ health and safety. 

How long will it take me to finish the walk?

That depends partly on you and your team and your fitness level(s). We anticipate the walk taking less than seven hours. If you are unable to reach the Brett Park checkpoint (near Birkenhead Point) by 10.30pm, we will be asking you to withdraw from the Long Walk Home and seek alternative forms of transport (i.e. bus, taxi or Uber) either to the finishing point or home.

What should I take on the walk?

As a minimum, you must take the following items: day-pack, identification, hat, sun-cream, full water bottle, food, blister pack, tape, phone, rain jacket, jumper, torch, money/credit cards, a spare pair of socks, mosquito repellent (note: we will be walking along mangroves for part of the walk and these are typically subject to above average levels of mosquitos).

What If I can't finish the Walk and decide to abandon it?

If you decide not to finish the walk and abandon it, you must let us know by calling a designated person on the day.

There will be transport options available to those who choose not to complete the Long Walk Home including ferry, buses and trains. You must reach the Birkenhead Point by 10.30pm (the cut-off time) to continue in the walk.

Where does the walk end?

The finish line of Long Walk Home is at Fitzroy Gardens in Potts Point, the park right next to Kings Cross Police Station and the famous El Alamein Fountain.

What happens at the finish line?

When you arrive at the finish line, there will be Wayside Chapel staff members and volunteers ready to greet you. This will be a designated Long Walk Home space where you can relax and recap your 28km. There will be a range of light refreshments available – coffee, tea, juice, snacks. This won’t be enough food to make a substantial dinner, however there are many food and drink options nearby. There will also be a photo wall, where you have the opportunity to take some photos with your friends and colleagues. Please note, space will have to close at 2 am.

How do people get home after the event?

You will need to organise your own transportation home from Fitzroy Gardens. After your walk, we recommend organising lifts, or splitting a ride sharing service. If you are getting a lift home, there is a 24 hour Secure Parking station, which is only a 5 minute walk from the finish point, where your driver can have 30 minute free parking. For public transport, Kings Cross Station is a 5 minute walk away, but please note the station closes at 2am.

Are there toilets available throughout the course?

Yes there are public toilets available through the walk. You will be able to find them on your map provided.