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The Little Optimist - The Adventure for the Children

The Little Optimist - The Adventure for the Children

Personal message

"I know ME as an adult would have helped ME as a kid to believe in myself sooner, dream bigger and reach for more quicker. I believe I can do this for thousands of sick and needy children. Help the LIttle Optimist and I to Inspire them! " - Greg Bertish

Having spent nearly 200 days in hospital in 2006/7, I was misdiagnosed, operated on, had IV drips 24/7, and at stages was offered no hope or cure. I used visualisation, optimism and my passion for the ocean and life to overcome, survive and get out of hospital. I was lucky, I had something to live for!

This may not be the case for many sick and scared children. Through my work with The Children’s Hospital Trust, I discovered these kids often have no passion or no desire to get well and leave hospital. They have very little to fight and live for. They face going home to broken families, one meal a day, and no passion or dream to inspire them to get better and survive. We need to change this!

An Optimistic Adventure

I am working with the Children’s Hospital Trust , to use the little 8 foot Optimist “bathtub” sailing dinghy to inspire children & patients to get better and get out of Hospital. I want to inspire these kids and people to be positive, to be optimistic, to never give up and to believe that they too can do anything they desire and want, no matter what challenges they face.

PART 1: 

An Optimistic Adventure: (March 2016) To boldly go where no Optimist has gone before!

As a long time sailor, lifesaver and big wave surfer & rescue PWC operator, I am working closely with NSRI to promote ocean safety. I will be working with Save Our Seas to promote ocean conservation, and have partnered with the Children’s Hospital Trust to help save kids, give them a passion and a skill, and get them inspired to leave hospital and get better.

The Ocean Adventure is 200km in the tiny Optimist Kids dinghy, representing the 200 days I spent in hospital.

  • From Cape Hangklip to Cape Point – across the Shark infested Waters of False Bay
  • Around Cape Point to Kommetjie – Around Cape Point and the Cape Of Storms
  • Kommetjie to Robben Island – Nelson Mandela/Belief and a Dream & Optimism
  • Robben Island to Dassen Island/ Yserfontein – many nautical miles out to sea/from dry land
  • Dassen Island/ Yserfontain to Saldanha Bay/ Langebaan

This amounts to 200km in the open ocean, along one of the wildest and most dangerous coastlines in the world! The longest, most dangerous open ocean voyage taken on by a little Optimist. The approximate duration will be 5 to 8 days.

All the funds raised through this campaign will go to the Children's Hospital Trust, saving children's lives.

Please consider making a donation to this campaign. You can either donate once off or per Km for the amount of days I spent in hospital. 

So 200 km  for 200 days – please sponsor me per KM .

Eg R5 per KM = R1000



Name Comment Date Amount
Pippa Lane To the inspiring Bertish boys. Love The Lanes Mar 09, 2017 R 11 615.68
Claire Bartman Brighten the world! Feb 06, 2017 R 1 028.20
Zeekoevlei Yacht Club On behalf of Commodore Mark Thompson, Committee, Members and Guests, thank you Greg for your inspiring talk! What great motivation for sailing and a wonderful cause to support for our children Sep 08, 2016 R 2 000.00
Frank Holland Magic stuff Greg, love your work! Jul 27, 2016 R 510.00
Tara and Philip baum What a wonderful and worthwhile adventure . Congratulations Jun 21, 2016 R 2 000.00
Jules, Jan & Rich Big up brother Jun 01, 2016 USD $ 201.71
Alison Kock "May the wind always fill your sails" May 31, 2016 R 205.64
Spotty A great inspiration to us all well done Greg May 26, 2016 R 1 028.20
Douglas Heel Great talk at SACS - thank you for your courage to do things differently May 26, 2016 R 1 028.20
Anonymous Thank you for your very inspiring talk and presentation, I left chocked up by your journey and how you have handled it head on. Thank you for prioritising what you've learnt and sharing your lessons. May 24, 2016 R 205.64
Terry Murphy Excellent initiative Greg super well done May 19, 2016 R 1 028.20
Greg Pearce Fantastic initiative and true grit. May 18, 2016 R 260.00
Paul Tomes tiny boat ... big idea ... huge heart! Congratulations May 18, 2016 R 510.00
jono coffey amazing May 18, 2016 R 500.00
sandy coffey fantastic initiative May 18, 2016 R 500.00
Ross Lindsay Job well done Greg and I was stoked to be a little part of a BIG Optimist's mission. May 10, 2016 R 12 801.09
John Cooper Greg, excellent initiative. Well Done!! May 10, 2016 R 1 010.00
Gareth Leck Go Crockie Go :) May 08, 2016 R 514.10
Garin Walker Go Greg - well done my friend - Aquarius Printing and Embroidery and Team May 06, 2016 R 500.00
Dario's Cafe Hout Bay Well done Greg from the Team and Crew at Dario's Cafe and Coffee- #houtbay rules May 06, 2016 R 1 028.20
Greg Goodwin Love you attitude to life Gregory !! May 05, 2016 R 514.10
Silen Go Greg!!! May 05, 2016 R 100.00
Sophia Pritchard Well done! May 05, 2016 R 1 010.00
Bev Shaw An amazing feat - thank you for your Optimism! May 05, 2016 R 210.00
S ray Awesome Greg May 05, 2016 R 514.10
Richard You can do it ! May 05, 2016 USD $ 10.00
Thomas Delpierre Well done Greg! Keep up the good work! May 03, 2016 USD $ 76.03
Rob Broster Congrats Greg! Inspiring May 03, 2016 R 1 028.20
Jose & Ofelia Mendes This is a beautiful cause and we fully support it .Well done Greg you are an example May 03, 2016 R 411.28
Lesley Clarke Amazed by your perseverance and courage to help young children. May 01, 2016 R 514.10
Gravity Adventures and Linda Kellett Happy 50th, Linda and thank you to Red Cross! Apr 29, 2016 R 1 010.00
Paul Wolpert Good luck Greg ! Apr 26, 2016 R 205.64
Adrian Hewlett Go conquer big things Apr 22, 2016 USD $ 73.52
Lolette Waterford Awesome challenge Apr 22, 2016 USD $ 51.46
Dean Good luck with your fundraising! Apr 20, 2016 R 514.10
Ex Oppie Sailor Great cause, great little boat Apr 18, 2016 R 257.05
Martina, Switzerland an impressive and touching thing ! Apr 18, 2016 USD $ 71.47
Henriette good luck with attaining all your goals Apr 18, 2016 R 110.00
Richard Great work Greg! Apr 17, 2016 R 2 067.85
Hochfelden family Inspirational. Well done Greg. Apr 17, 2016 R 514.10
Anonymous Great work Greg Apr 15, 2016 R 20 000.00
De Vogel Family Such an inspiration Apr 13, 2016 R 205.64
INC Trading Group Go! The Little Optimist, Regards Jules Apr 13, 2016 R 514.10
Dawid Mocke Love the adventurous passion Greg! Like I've always said: "Passion Precedes Purpose" Apr 12, 2016 USD $ 25.04
Ivan Van Vuuren Go for it Greg -never stop changing lives for the better bro... Iv + Clan ;) Apr 11, 2016 USD $ 35.24
Annie & Nonna & Moose Good luck, and well done! Apr 08, 2016 R 205.64
Kayos Casting Directors Go you good Bertish go, sail that Optimist into history. Apr 08, 2016 R 2 056.40
olivier and jeanne barrault well done, you are a big example for all of us Apr 08, 2016 R 3 084.60
The Board Box Surf Factory Thank you for everything you do for the Children Greg. Always a massive inspiration to us at The Board Box :) Apr 08, 2016 R 514.10
daniel and kubesh and jody kantor go krok go Apr 08, 2016 R 1 028.20
Tasha Mentasti Thank you for your never ending energy and constant inspiration!! Apr 08, 2016 R 110.00
Alan Wellburn Safe sailing Greg. You are an inspiration Apr 08, 2016 R 514.10
Praesidium Capital Management Great work, Greg, bon voyage! Apr 07, 2016 R 10 000.00
The Ramsay/Heard Family Love you and you optimism Apr 07, 2016 R 15 587.78
Cara de Vogel Go Little Optimist Go :) Apr 07, 2016 R 102.82
Swimmable Great initiative Greg - something to be very proud of. See you in the water. Tom Apr 07, 2016 R 514.10
Mark E Thumbs up! Apr 06, 2016 R 10 010.00
Mark Smooth sailing Apr 05, 2016 R 308.46
Share The Stoke Foundation South Africa Your optimism is always inspiring! Apr 05, 2016 R 1 010.00
Raubies Family Well done on spreading your optimism & good luck !!! Apr 04, 2016 R 514.10
Andre Wollheim Good luck buddy! Apr 04, 2016 R 100.00
Leon Nel Greg your book Stoked was an awesome read - good luck with this project - I am sure you will reach target. Apr 04, 2016 R 514.10
Mark Pienaar Humbling and delighted to support Apr 04, 2016 R 1 028.20
Richard Bowsher Inspiring life and care Greg! Apr 04, 2016 R 1 028.20
DMS Great initiative - good luck Apr 03, 2016 R 205.64
yael joffe beautiful idea for our kids Apr 03, 2016 R 514.10
Gray Family What an awesome initiative! Apr 02, 2016 R 1 542.30
Andrew Lewis Sounds like a great project. Good luck !! Apr 01, 2016 R 2 056.40
The Paterson Family Love your work. Apr 01, 2016 R 1 028.20
Anonymous Great project Greg - good luck dude Apr 01, 2016 R 1 028.20
Anonymous Good job Greg, enjoy it. Apr 01, 2016 R 2 056.40
vlei_where_it_began Go Greg. Awesome idea and project. May the wind always be at your back Apr 01, 2016 R 514.10
anonymous great cause Greg Apr 01, 2016 R 2 056.40
Tony All the best, such a legend for doing this. Mar 31, 2016 R 1 010.00
Connor and Bianca Duncan Well done Greg, safe sailing Mar 31, 2016 R 1 028.20
Chris P Good work Greg - thanks for the sup inspriation Mar 31, 2016 R 1 542.30
francis finlay great job Mar 31, 2016 R 1 028.20
John McCarthy Go for it Greg, what an awesome initiative. Sail safe and I hope you raise big $$$. Mar 31, 2016 R 1 028.20
James Inspirational stuff Greg! Mar 31, 2016 USD $ 70.51
Goodman-Bhyat You are an inspiration! A contributor to this crazy world. Thank you. Mar 31, 2016 R 1 028.20
Chris Love your work, Greg:) Mar 31, 2016 R 2 570.50
Esther Campbell Well done Greg and Tracy Mar 30, 2016 R 1 028.20
Hans and Tanya Klett Congratulations on a wonderful initiatve. Donation in honour of Derek Stuart's 50th birthday :) Mar 09, 2016 R 781.38
Lisa Great initiative and story of hope and courage. May the wind be (gently) in your sails Greg! Mar 09, 2016 R 512.50
Mark Herd For all the DWD I'm going to miss due to being in hospital myself, but only for a few days. Good on you Greg. Mar 07, 2016 R 370.00
Mike and Sylvia Smith Well done Greg Mar 07, 2016 R 210.00
Guy Blake Greg well done on all your hard work and great attitude to life! Cool to see you again and meeting your family rgds Guy Mar 05, 2016 R 512.50
Bruce Johnston Thank you for caring for those who need all the help they can get to survive in this world. Mar 05, 2016 R 512.50
Dean Phillips From the Downwinders. Mar 04, 2016 R 123.00
Lollo :-) Mar 04, 2016 R 1 025.00
4C Charity Club Wishing you all the best with your 200km adventure. Feb 29, 2016 USD $ 97.88
Donate to this charity


Donations to date

R 291 227.48

Fundraising target

R 300 000.00

Funds raised offline

R 138 923.00

The Little Optimist

The Little Optimist Logo

A little Optimist 'bathtub' boat (in association with The Children's Hospital Trust) takes to the open sea to inspire children & patients to get better and get out of hospital. The big heart of 'Opi' aims to inspire these kids and people to be positive, optimistic, to never give up. This is a project that teaches children to believe that they too can achieve their dreams despite what they are told or what challenges they face.