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‘Freedom Seat’ activist inspires ITC staff and students

Posted on 02/05/2017 by

Naresh Kumar recently spoke to ITC students about his experience riding the length of New Zealand to raise money for charity.

Staff and students at the International Travel College of New Zealand (ITC) were recently inspired by the incredible story of Naresh Kumar from Freedom Seat. Naresh delivered a presentation at ITC’s City Campus in early April, where he spoke about his journey.

On January 16, Naresh set out to ride the length of New Zealand on a tandem bike named ‘Kindness’ to raise money for Tearfund, a not-for-profit leading the fight against human trafficking. He cycled from Cape Reinga to Bluff – an impressive 3,300 kilometres.

Naresh embarked on this challenging journey to raise awareness about human trafficking.

“We live in a world where vulnerable people are lured away from their families with promises of money and a better life,” Naresh told Yahoo! NZ.

“Once in the hands of traffickers, they’re deceived, coerced, and blackmailed into the lives of commercial sexual exploitation, often NEVER to see their families again.”

Naresh chose to ride on a tandem bike so that people could join him for parts of the journey. He believes those who joined him also got a feeling for what it’s like to place your trust in a stranger’s hands – only, unlike traffickers, he let everyone get off when they wanted.

ITC tutor Inder Singh said Naresh’s presentation was an “eye opener”.

“Naresh helped me to realise how some people can be so cruel and do such things against humanity. He is not only helping people but also raising awareness and connecting people. Hats off to him for sacrificing his career for others,” says Inder.

ITC students were equally inspired by Naresh’s story – so much so that they raised a generous $367.60 for Tearfund. This helped bring Naresh’s total amount raised up to an impressive $43,902.83.

Now visiting the United States, Naresh is continuing his campaign to end human trafficking. You can follow his journey on Instagram or get in touch with him directly via email.

You can also still donate to his NZ Freedom Seat Campaign over on Everyday Hero.

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