I've been playing around with the idea of doing a themed overland charity challenge/adventure for a little while now. It would be a 4WD (sorry, not a biker
) overland adventure for a charitable organisation that provides vital aid and services in many african nations.
The organisation concerned is UNICEF, a great cause if ever there was one. The problem I see though is that it all just seems to distant to us wealthy folks in the west. Every day we see the almost numbingly standardised appeals on TV asking for more money for some terrible place in the world we have never heard of, been to or wanted to visit.
Now, as for the theme. My particular area of interest in the various projects UNICEF carries out is their support for and development of basic education in sub-Saharan Africa. So my idea is to do a tour of a group of countries in which UNICEF is active and visiting first-hand an example of their efforts.
I want to make a travel diary of the tour with plenty of photographs and various interviews and chats with the actual people on the ground that are working hard to make things better for many people, especially the younger generation.
I want to try and reestablish that personal connection between the people in the West who do not have to worry, for the most part, about providing their children with a basic education. We perhaps make the occasional donation but we hardly ever really think about what the reality is like on the ground. The poverty, the lack of opportunities, the lack of a reasonable future which we all too often take for granted.
As for the number of countries involved and the fundraising target, etc I had the following idea in mind. Have a kind of math theme as follows:
- 25 Countries in Africa
- 25 Week Tour
- 25 Schools being assisted by UNICEF
- $25,000 raised for donation with $1,000 going to each UNICEF project visited
Notice the repetitive 25's?
Not a coincidence. What is 25 + 25 + 25 + 25?
Correct, 100. And that is the other part of the math theme because that is a useful number for a slogan or something similar. I'll show you what I mean.
Slogan: The "Get An African Education" Challenge
Goal: Visit 25 UNICEF Child Education projects in 25 African countries in 25 weeks to deliver $25,000 in donations.
I even had an idea for the official t-shirt.
- Front Side
A map of Africa showing the planned route and the name of the challenge in a circular format around the continent.
- Back Side
In a kind of chalk board looking font to resemble what a maths equation would look like.
25 UNICEF Projects
+ 25 Thousand Dollars
= 100% CHALLENGE
The total amount of fundraising required would probably be in the range of $40-50,000 though. With funds going towards the acquisition of the vehicle and its modification for a 6 month overland journey. As well as the fuel cost. And then the equipment that will be needed along the way. The modified vehicle and equipment can then be resold to a lucky overlander and the proceeds also donated to UNICEF. So, allowing for depreciation of the vehicle and modifications, as well as the equipment, the total final amount actually provided to UNICEF for use in their important education projects would most likely be around the $30-40,000 mark.
With the right promotion efforts, a bit of support from the UNICEF-Netherlands office and a helping hand from businesses in my region I believe it should be possible.
Ok, thats my idea. I would love to get some feed back from people. Both positive and negative, whatever the case may be. As for fundraising, if the figure I mentioned an obtainable target or pie-in-the-sky?