DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) -Eric Pujari and Ryan Ellis have been walking across the state of Ohio for more than a week.
The pair of educatos from Southwest Ohio started in the Toledo area and have walked about 170 miles over the last eight days.
Despite carrying heavy bags, enduring summer heat, and walking on dangerous roads with no sidewalks the two say they’re not ready to quit until they’ve raised $10,000 for Joshua’s Place.
“The 2 most important things in my life right now are just walking forward…and fundraising, doing some good,” said Pujari who is a science teacher at Dayton Public Schools.
Joshua’s Place is a nonprofit that has a goal of helping “individuals and families overcome the barriers in their lives that cause instability.”
Right now, they are largely serving as a food bank during the coronavirus pandemic.
Both are familiar with working with families who could use the assistance provided by Joshua’s Place .
“From being in Dayton Public Schools, I teach a greater percentage of low-income students. Everyone in my school is on free or reduced lunch. so I’ve kind of seen how [hunger] can impact people first hand,” explained Pujari.
So far, they have traveled to Toledo, Bowling Green, Lima, Cincinnati ,and Dayton – where Eric is from. The two are making a difference step by step and hoping to reach Lebanon by the end of the week.
“We set out on this having absolutely no idea if anyone would care. And a lot of people have shown up to help out, so its inspiring to know that the further we go the more people we can help out,” said Ryan Ellis who teaches music and band to students.
For more information on their fundraiser, click here.