The main activity of this nonprofit is a human-powered expedition around the world in a rowboat, a feat that has never been done. Throughout this expedition, the voyager Ellen will be raising awareness of the state of our world's oceans by providing a personal insight into the effects of climate change on seasonal winds, currents, storm seasons, and communities that are threatened by rising water levels. Longtime sailor Jimmy Cornwell in his book World Cruising Routes observes firsthand "the disastrous effects of climate change in places like Tuvalu...the death of coral reefs in the tropics, and the absence of steady trade winds even on previously reliable routes (pg. 7)." Climate change deniers cannot deny the fact that pilot charts for marine navigation all come with a disclaimer that warn of the unreliability of weather conditions due to global warming. It's not hearsay; it's just numbers. Rowing around the world in a rowboat will bring people an insight into the meteorology of climate change and the suffering of Earth's oceans - which cover approximately 70% of our planet and hold 96.5% of all the water on Earth (usgs.gov).
Additionally, the voyager Ellen will be showcasing women as independent persons, capable both physically and mentally of challenges historically reserved mainly for men. In ocean rowing alone, only 18 women have completed a solo ocean crossing, compared to just over 200 solo men (Statistics curtsey of The Ocean Rowing Society). Outside of ocean rowing, the voyager Ellen is also a pilot and flight instructor, which further defies standard perception of women. In the U.S., women only account for 7.9% of all licensed pilots and 7% of certified flight instructors (FAA's Aeronautical Center (December 31st, 2019 data)
These disproportionate ratios are not due to women's capabilities, but rather the general perception of women as dependent rather than independent. This effects the way young girls are raised, and how they navigate the world as women. If shown that women can be just as capable as men - in anything from flying airplanes to ocean rowing - this expedition can change society's historically patriarchal perspective, and give women the freedom of independence that men have enjoyed for millennia.
Lastly, the magnitude of this expedition and the physical and mental challenge it presents will provide an inspirational example of a human living a dream - and encourage others to live the lives they've always wanted. Taking on a journey of this size showcases what humans can do, what is possible, and challenges human endurance and survival. The voyager Ellen will be providing updates from the ocean that will get people think about their own lives, their own dreams, and show them that now is the time to live their path. We are all here for a purpose, and the more people live their true purpose, the more the world will change for the better.
This expedition - and the ensuing nonprofit - will span roughly 6 years and cover approximately 35,000 miles, making this a global cause. At every port, the voyager Ellen has the opportunity to speak to locals, schools, companies, organizations, and any persons who will benefit from the insight of a woman alone at sea. The ground crew and nonprofit directors are based out of Texas, but the reach of this cause goes far beyond the confines of man-made borders.
Funds for this cause will be collected via corporate sponsors whose companies don't present a conflict with the cause. Examples would include corporations who specialize in outdoor gear or marine equipment, while companies who destroy the environment would not be accepted. Additionally, the cause is open to private donors who believe in the cause - whether it is for ocean conservation, inspiring women, or simply living your true path.
This is a full-time endeavor. The voyager Ellen will spend all of her time living in the rowboat, travelling in a westerly circumnavigation of the globe spreading the messages of awareness and inspiration everywhere she goes.
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