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Copenhagen City Hall honours Oceans of Hope

OoH Nov 18, 2015, by Liv Elbirk in Events
From the event: "Copenhagen"

On November 17th, the Sailing Sclerosis Foundation was invited to the City Hall by the Copenhagen City Council in honour of the extraordinary effort put into one of Denmark’s largest sailing projects to date, Oceans of Hope. Representatives of the official sponsor, Biogen, participated in the event and as always the crew of people living with MS who have taken part in the voyage, participated in great numbers. The atmosphere was warm and festive in the historic banquet hall and as everyone got ready to taste the City Hall’s signature pancakes, the founding father of the Sailing Sclerosis Foundation and Oceans of Hope, Mikkel Anthonisen, gave a speech. The full transcript is available here:

"I am honoured that we have been invited to Copenhagen City Hall’s signature Pancakes and as such joined the company of Danes who have achieved great things. Being welcomed by the Mayor of Health and Care, Ninna Thomsen, on the quay upon arrival and now being honoured and hosted at the City Hall manifests our circumnavigation of the world in a very special way. It is a recognition that ordinary people, in this case with MS, have done something extraordinary. A big thank you to the Copenhagen City Council for this great honour.

Our circumnavigation has been a necessary journey. There was something that needed to be rectified and changed; in this case the perception of MS and how it is to live with a chronic disease. We have succeeded in doing that.

Sometimes we need something greater than ourselves – and we need one another and nature to come into contact with it. Sometimes we need a great narrative – and to live it! We need it in order to figure out who we are and to live the life we ​​want to lead. In each other’s company and in harmony with nature. This is how we feel that we are alive – despite the challenges that may otherwise stand in the way of our experience of a meaningful existence. We have travelled out into the world with our message of community, equality and an insistence upon living our lives. We have come all the way around the world, and something inside of us has changed forever. We have come home.

Now is the time for Anchorage. Our beloved boat, Oceans of Hope, is safely moored in domestic port. The winter will be used for contemplation and conversation. We're going to talk to people here at home about our experiences with the circumnavigation. We need to begin a dialogue with other associations and institutions, and thus find the best way to move forward with our ideas and values.

We will move forward. What we have created is so significant and strong that it must and will spread out in the world. It is a very simple message about a way of being together - a way to create an experience of meaning here and now, and thus nurture the hope of a good life."

– Mikkel Anthonisen

Team Oceans of Hope

Copenhagen City Hall's signature Pancakes

This article was written by

Liv Elbirk

Communications Manager