Jet trekkers depart from Burnett Heads

Event director Craig Marriott explains the ins and outs of
The Yamaha Variety Jet Trek at start of the event in Burnett Heads.

A big-hearted group of about 100 riders on jet skis hit the water at Burnett Heads this morning, beginning a six-day fundraising journey to Hamilton Island.

The riders and their support crew spent two days or more in Bundaberg leading up to the launch, providing an economic boost to the region.

Clear skies for a great day at the start of The Yamaha Variety Jet Trek in Burnett Heads.

The Yamaha Variety Jet Trek, now in its 21st year, is an adrenaline-packed adventure that sees riders travel some of the most picturesque sections of the Australian coastline.

Trekkers, as they are affectionately known, will see the direct impact of their fundraising as they present grants of equipment and services to children and schools in towns along the way.

Since the event’s inception, Jet Trekkers have raised more than $2 million for Aussie kids in need.

The Yamaha Variety Jet Trek is organised by Variety – the Children’s Charity helping Aussie kids who are sick, disadvantaged or have special needs.

Last year Variety launched a new program for kids called Sea of Smiles, which provides an inclusive and experiential learning opportunity to kids of all abilities and backgrounds, who otherwise may miss out.

“We are really excited to expand our Sea of Smiles program, as water activities can help a starved or overactive sensory system, which can be a challenge for a lot of the kids we meet,” Variety Queensland’s chief executive Steve Wakerley said.

Participants getting ready for the first leg of their travels from Burnett Heads.

“Water can energise, and yet it can also calm. We witnessed this first-hand when we trialled the program last year in Port Macquarie. The impact on these kids and their teachers was incredible.”

After spending several days in Bundaberg before today's start, trekkers will stop in Agnes Water, Yeppoon, Stanage Bay, Mackay and Hamilton Island to complete their 800km journey.

To get involved, register for the next Yamaha Variety Jet Trek.