On May 19, Marcel Bootsman will begin his long 465 mi. (748 km) trek on foot from his hometown of Berkel en Rodenrijs to WordCamp Europe in Berlin. That’s right, he’s walking across Germany. And better yet, he’s donating all the proceeds to DonateWC.

We love it when people think, or should we say step 👟, outside the box. Being a bootstrap company ourselves, innovation and creativity aren’t just nice to have, they’re a necessity. When we see others in the space coming up with ingenious ways like this to contribute to the WordPress community, we have to be part of it.

Check out how you can help and follow along with Marcel on what’s going to be the most epic WordCamp adventure ever documented!

Who is Marcel Bootsman?

Marcel Bootsman left the corporate world behind in 2009 and founded his own company, Nostromo. Marcel does everything from WordPress development and maintenance (theme, plugins), to building responsive ecommerce sites (WooCommerce), and even consulting for marketing agencies. He lives with his wife Beatrijs, son Noam, daughter Mila and dog Grover, in Berkel en Rodenrijs, a village near Rotterdam.

I no longer wanted to use my creativity and knowledge in my spare time alone, I wanted to help clients solve their challenges and problems.

Not only does Marcel use WordPress to make a living, but he also very active in the WordPress community, specifically Nederlands / Dutch. He’s a moderator on the WordPress NL forum, a translation editor for NL, and has organized various WordCamps and Meetups through the years.

In fact, Marcel was the organizer for WordCamp Rotterdam 2019 where the Kinsta team actually had the pleasure of meeting Marcel in person.

Walk to WordCamp Europe

Starting May 19, 2019, Marcel Bootsman will begin his 465 mi. (748 km) journey walking to Berlin from his hometown of Berkel en Rodenrijs. The trek will entail of 32 days of travel with 6 days of rest, ending on June 19, 2019.

Walk to WordCamp Europe route
Walk to WordCamp Europe route (Image source: Google Maps)

First off, why walk to WordCamp Europe? Marcel has three reasons:

  1. To raise funds for DonateWC and help support the community. We encourage you to chip in and help donate!
  2. To step, literally, out of his comfort zone and try something new. Everyone drives/flies to WordCamps, but who actually walks to one?
  3. To have fun and meet friends along the way. Many awesome people and members of the WordPress community have helped by providing places for Marcel to stay along the way.

If you aren’t familiar with it, WordCamp Europe is the largest WordPress conference in the world. It’s an annual event that welcomes everyone and aims to form and strengthen connections between European WordPress communities and beyond, it includes two conference days and a separate Contributor Day, when people gather to give back to the WordPress Open Source Project.

WordCamp Europe, or WCEU, is hosted in a different European city each year and organized by a team of volunteers selected from the WordPress community. In 2019 it will take place in Berlin, Germany on 20-22 June at the Estrel Hotel and Congress Center.

Kinsta is proud to be a Gold sponsor for Walk to WordCamp Europe! It’s all for a good cause and we wanted to help. You’ll see him sporting some Kinsta swag along the way. 🧢

Donate and Proceeds Go to DonateWC

You can help Marcel! Donate and proceeds raised from Walk to WordCamp Europe go to DonateWC. DonateWC is an initiative founded by Ines van Essen, and aims to provide people with lesser financial means with funds to get to a (big) WordCamp.

Helping people with financial challenges to attend a WordCamp is something that strengthens the community and brings people together. By raising funds for DonateWC, I’m helping these people, and supporting the WordPress community (which I have been doing for a while in other areas the last years).

From donations collected, they provide deserving community members with the following:

  • A WordCamp ticket
  • Door to door transportation
  • Accommodation
  • Food and drink money
  • Internet access
  • A once-in-a-lifetime experience

Follow Along on Marcel’s Adventure

We’ll be following Marcel along on his adventure and sharing updates as he makes the long trek to Berlin. The Kinsta team will also be at WordCamp Europe and we hope to see you all there! Make sure to stop by and say hello if you’re attending. 👋

If you can, we encourage you to donate (https://walktowc.eu/donate/) and help make the dreams of attending a WordCamp possible for individuals who might not be able to attend otherwise. Marcel is trying to raise $6,700 (€6000). With that amount, three people can go to a WordCamp (based on average costs).

Marcel will be tweeting and posting vlogs along the way, make sure to follow him:

Are you ready to walk to the next WordCamp? 😉

Brian Jackson

Brian has a huge passion for WordPress, has been using it for over a decade, and even develops a couple of premium plugins. Brian enjoys blogging, movies, and hiking. Connect with Brian on Twitter.