2016: Southern Africa

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2016:  Southern Africa

In June – August 2016, Matt walked 2,296km across Southern Africa to raise awareness of global poverty and raise funds for his charity partners. Matt’s journey started on 4 June 2016 from Walvis Bay in Namibia, which is on the West coast of Southern Africa. Ahead of schedule by 2 and a half weeks, he reached Maputo, Mozambique on the East coast on 2 August 2016. The route took him through the Kalahari Desert, Botswana and the northern part of South Africa – a total of 2,296km.  The exact route and Matt’s travel diary can be found in this google map.

During the walk Matt survived on US$1.50 per day for food to show how hard it is to survive on so little.  There are currently around 2 billion people in the world that survive on this amount so it will be a challenge for him to put himself in their shoes for about 10 weeks.  He lost 15 kg with 8 of those being in the first 10 days.  He describes it as the hardest thing he has ever done.

Matt kicked and carried a football the entire way to connect with people in the local communities. ‘Football is a sport that brings people together from all walks of life,’ he explains.. Whilst his football dribbling skills aren’t great, he managed not to loose a single ball!  Matt also gave away 200 soccerballs to children at schools and community groups along the route.  The balls being donated by an amazing 12 year old Mac Millar.

The journey also raised $62,000 which funded four projects through Oxfam Australia, Caritas Australia, Care Australia and the Fred Hollows Foundation.

Click the “fullscreen” button in the Map above to view the full Google Map including comments and photos from Matt along the journey

Blog Posts

Why the Soccerball??

I often get asked what role the soccer ball has in my walk across Africa… I believe sport and physical...


The four galleries below contain photos of Matt’s 2016 journey.


13 min documentary about 2016 Southern Africa journey

Video overview of 2016 journey

Interview on Good Morning Namibia – 4 June 2016

Video Message: Australian High Commissioner

Caritas interviews Matt about his walk

Matt Napier: Poverty Ambassador
(May 2016)

Who is Matt Napier?
(April 2016)

Introduction to Walk to a Better World (Feb 2016)

Click here for more videos

Projects Funded

The following projects were funded by donations received during the 2016 journey.

Fred Hollows





Click here to view media from the 2016 Southern Africa journey.

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