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Source: Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology

Skydiving may be a breeze for some, but not when you are afraid of heights.

Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology Chief Executive Dr. Leon Fourie recently faced his fear and jumped out of a plane, all in a bid to raise money for charity. 

Dr. Fourie took part in this year’s Drop Your Boss Bay of Plenty fundraiser for the Graeme Dingle Foundation.

The 10,000 foot skydive took place in Tauranga on Saturday and has so far raised more than $5000 for the incredible work the Graeme Dingle Foundation does in our communities. 

Dr. Fourie said he was apprehensive about the skydive, but once he was in the plane there was no turning back. 

“I must admit I’m not a huge fan of heights and the prospect of a skydive was quite intimidating.

“The Graeme Dingle Foundation ethos is that the strength and mana you have on the inside is greater than any obstacle you may face, so this was great motivation. 

“I know some of the struggles and challenges that some of our young people face and I wanted to do this not only to show you can achieve things you put your mind to, but to raise money for this great foundation.”

Although nerve-racking, he says the skydive itself was exhilarating. 

“There’re no words to describe it. The freefall is very surreal but when the parachute opens and you get an amazing view of Tauranga and Mount Maunganui it is breath-taking.” 

The Graeme Dingle Foundation runs Project K, Kiwi Can, and Stars, reaching more than 3500 young people in the Bay of Plenty. 

These are all proven and successful school-based programmes that aim to inspire young people to reach their full potential by helping to build their self-esteem, promote good values and teach valuable life, education and health skills.

“As the Chief Executive of the largest tertiary provider in the Bay of Plenty – Toi Ohomai, I am passionate about education opportunities for all learners and see significant value in collaborative partnerships that enrich our local communities.”

Dr. Fourie is one of 25 participants in this year’s Bay of Plenty Drop Your Boss fundraiser and there is still time to donate to his online fundraising page.