Atlanta, GA (WiredPRNews.com) Adding a whole new meaning to “Leg Work,” Walk The Dream will walk 4,700 miles in 180 days and broadcast stories about small business innovation and entrepreneurs pursuing the American Dream while making a difference in their local communities. Walk The Dream also plans to raise donations in order to create networks of business professionals volunteering time and talent to between 10 – 15 small businesses annually in local communities throughout the U.S.
Walk The Dream founder Pete Boehm believes a strong economy is tied to a healthy and supportive small business community. So much so, that he’s willing to risk his feet, health and sanity in order to help turn our economy around. Pete and a group of supporters will begin a 4,700 mile walk to showcase small business innovation in the United States and raise awareness of the challenges faced by those starting a new business in this difficult economy.
Walk The Dream begins in Atlanta, GA on July 4, 2011 and will travel to major cities throughout the U.S. including Charlotte, Washington D.C., New York, Detroit, Chicago, Minneapolis, Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Phoenix, Dallas, New Orleans, Tampa and countless smaller towns in between. The plan is to walk about 26 miles a day, or a marathon’s distance daily, for approximately six months.
During the journey, Walk The Dream will record and share stories about small business owners making a difference in their field as well as their community; the effort is lovingly referred to as a Walk-U-Mentary.
“Every town in America can offer a story about a local business owner who is either helping his or her community or doing something really cool in their industry; quite often both,” said Boehm. “Our goal is to introduce these people to the American public during our journey and leverage the power of social media as our platform to share the good they’re doing. We’ll use Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, Twitter, WalkTheDream.com and our blog to spread the word about these amazing people. It’s about time we start to feel good about ourselves while doing good at the same time.”
Over half of all small businesses launched fail within five years; 30% fail within the first two. “People don’t fully realize how essential a healthy and vibrant small business community is to our national economy,” added Boehm. There are more than 25 million small businesses in the U.S. Collectively they contribute over 50% of our total gross domestic product and employ well over half our total workforce.
“We can’t solely rely upon government agencies, the SBA, Venture Capital and Angel Investors to help fund small businesses. They typically won’t invest in someone opening a beauty salon or machine shop. We’re hoping to help anyone with a solid business plan with plans to stay local, hire locally and generate taxable revenues,” said Boehm. “But in the end, it’s also about providing guidance, experience, support and expertise from volunteers and business executives who’ve been in those same shoes before.”
By taking donations, Walk The Dream plans to fund and establish local volunteer networks of business professionals willing to help members of their community successfully launch between 10-15 new businesses every year. These networks, or Seed Groups, will be a result of a viral effort ito build stronger small business communities one city at a time. “Americans are a generous people and what better way to give back than to volunteer time and talent in order to help new businesses succeed in your community?”, said Boehm. All donations contributed to Walk The Dream will go directly to the creation of these local Seed Groups. Walk The Dream will cover its operating expenses by offering sponsorships for the Walk, selling logo’d merchandise, releasing a DVD, coffee table book and hosting a storefront on www.walkthedream.com where a portion of proceeds from purchases go directly towards running the organization.
Walk the Dream is a promotional, marketing and celebratory journey supporting Walk The Dream Organization LLC., an organization designed to launch and support Seed Groups consisting of business volunteers who believe the best way to help oneself is by helping others first. The first Seed Fund Group was named the Atlanta Seed Fund on LinkedIn and created by Pete Boehm, a serial entrepreneur who understands firsthand the challenges, heartache and exhilaration associated with starting one’s own business.
Pete and his team of supporters are still seeking sponsors. In addition to being an extreme endurance challenge, Walk The Dream needs sponsors to cover essentials like food, lodging, transportation and equipment.
To learn more about Walk The Dream and its mission, please visit www.walkthedream.com.
If you’re on Facebook, please visit the Walk The Dream Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/#!/walkthedreamsmallbiz.
We’re also on Twitter at Walkthedreambiz.