Fundraising mission: Wakatipu High School Year 12 students Rohil Prasad, left, and Jack McBeth


Two Wakatipu High students will spend almost two days in a Skyline gondola cabin this weekend, raising money for the 40 Hour Famine.

Year 12 students Jack McBeth and Rohil Prasad will move into one of the cabins on Friday at 8pm, and won’t really leave it till noon Sunday.

While inside the gondola they’re not allowed any form of entertainment — meaning phones, books, games and cards are all contraband.

The pair will only be allowed to leave the gondola for bathroom breaks, and only have a
two-way radio to communicate to the outside world.

Jack says while it’ll be a challenge, when he’s older he’ll be able to tell his kids about the adventure.

During Skyline’s operating hours, the cabin will be travelling non-stop, while at night
it’ll be removed from the line and parked at the front of the building to allow members of
the public to stop by.

Jack says they wanted to make their fundraising as public as possible.

‘‘What’s the first thing you see when you come into Queenstown?

‘‘The gondola.’’

The school’s set a fundraising goal of $10,000 — online fundraising to date’s raised more than $3000.

About 100 people at the school are taking part in the famine — other students are skiing at Coronet Peak, provided it’s open, and plan on setting up a fundraising booth at the skifield.

Other booths will be set up at the base of the gondola and at Steamer Wharf.

This year’s 40 Hour Famine’s fundraising for Sub-Saharan Africa, where 280 million children go hungry — that number’s worsened because of Covid.

Anyone wanting to donate can visit