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Help Todd Fight Childhood Sexual Abuse
$4,405 raised
88% of $5k goal
35 contributors
0 days left
Ended Feb 23, 2014
On August 23rd I'll be embarking on my second extended backpacking trip to raise money for PROTECT and RAINN (Rape, Abuse& Incest National Network), 2 organizations who work tirelessly to end the physical and emotional abuse of both children and adults.
On August 23rd I'll be embarking on my second extended backpacking trip to raise money for PROTECT and RAINN (Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network), 2 organizations who work tirelessly to end the physical and emotional abuse of children as well as adults. The money raised will be divided evenly between the two organizations.

So, who am I? My name is Todd Forkin and I'm 48 years old, live in Connecticut and work in the healthcare field at Danbury Hospital. My job each day is to take care of the human heart. I'm also a musician and a writer who has written an unpublished novel called "Pulling Scars From The Night Time Sky". It's an autobiography that chronicles the unraveling of my life from January of 2000 to December of 2011 in real time. Most importantly, though, I'm a trail runner. In the last few years I've started running on the Appalachian Trail between Stormville, NY and Kent, CT. It was on these runs that something started to shift inside me. I began to shed the deadened skin of my past, to leave behind a life that did it's best to kill me, to shed the anger, the self hatred, the panic that I felt every morning upon waking up. I first fell in love with the punishment of running; the primal physical act that served as a way for me to inflict pain upon myself in a way that felt far less self destructive than methods I'd chosen in the past. A transformation began to occur in those long solitary miles; the desire to punish became the desire to rebuild and reclaim, to turn a fractured little boy into a man willing to create a life worth living. It was on those Saturday runs on the AT, alone with my thoughts for hours and hours, that I began to wonder what weeks or months spent walking through the woods might do to speed the process of finding who I am, to reclaim my soul, to gain a sense of self that makes life not only sustainable, but filled with a beauty and sense of awe that I know exists.

Last September that idea turned from possibility, to probability, to a juggernaut with an inertia all it's own. I was given the month of September off from work, obsessively researched gear, and over the course of 30 cold and rainy days completed a thru hike of the Long Trail, a 300 mile long trail that runs along the spine of the Green Mountains from Massachusetts to the Canadian Border. I chose NAPC/Protect as the charity that I fundraised for and was able to raise $3000 to aid them in their work to end childhood sexual and emotional abuse.

This year I'll be heading to California to spend 23 days in the Range Of Light as it was called by John Muir. The John Muir trail is 220 miles long and winds it's way through California's Sierra Nevada range. This years trip, once we're south of Yosemite Valley, will be much more remote with a much higher population of black bears and elevations that will top out at an oxygen depriving 14,500 feet on the summit of Mt. Whitney. After raising $3000 for PROTECT last year I've decided to set $5000 as my goal for this year. I'll also be dividing the money raised equally between PROTECT and the Rape, Abuse, & Incest National Network (RAINN), an organization that works to end sexuall violence against all ages and genders. There is no more noble cause.

So who I am? I'm a 48 year old man that has been given the gift of time to search for my soul, to make peace with what has at times been a frightening past, and to finally see the world not through the eyes of a sexually abused child, but the eyes of a man who realizes that every breath he's given is something to squeeze tightly and not squander. I've often heard that grace is an undeserved gift. I can think of no better way to describe last years thru hike of the Long Trail and this years hike on the John Muir Trail,.
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