Venturing out to the Amazon, IT professional asks donors to take away his comforts for education projects

A Bellevue IT professional is venturing out to the Amazon this Saturday. No, not the company across Lake Washington.

Joel Nix, cofounder of the nonprofit Connecting Borders Foundation, will travel to the Rio Blanco by way of Iquitos, Peru to raise money for aid projects while asking donors to take away his Western comforts in a jungle survival course.

Nix seeks $10,000 through crowdfunding site IndieGoGo for educational materials for locals in the Peruvian Amazon, educational computer systems for projects in Uganda and at home in Washington state, and support for an orphanage in Peru.

For each funding goal reached, Nix said he will take away one amenity from his trip, starting with his toothbrush at $500 raised (Nix would use charcoal instead, he said) and ending with his mosquito net at $10,000 — but only on the last night of the trip, after he's covered himself in "termite juice" and palm leaves. A $25,000 "extreme bonus" goal, if reached, would have Nix shuck his Western clothing during the last 48 hours of his trip. He would instead construct clothing out of local plants.

Nix had raised $335 as of this writing, with the donation deadline looming on April 10.

Donors will have access to a website tracking Nix's position by GPS. The top 50 donors will receive first access to a video of the trip.


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