Austen from Cookham and his friend Sam Payne are housemates and second
year Geography students at Exeter University. Late one night (in a pub)
they shook hands and decided that driving 10,000 miles East in a Citroen
2CV for charity would be a great way of spending a summer. Since then they
have found a local 2CV specialist who has agreed to help them build a car
that they will go in, they’ve paid the £387 entrance fee and the £796
for the visas needed to cross one third of the Earth’s surface.
are now looking for help from local businesses. They need to raise at
least £1000 for their two charities (Information about our chosen
Mongolian charities is below) and £3905 for costs needed to get them
there (not including beer money!). They
both work in local pubs as much as possible when at home but even with our
student loan they need help to get to Mongolia.
They would be very grateful
for money that went solely to the charities or to running costs or that
will be spilt between the charities and running costs.
Sponsors can have their logos placed on the car. The size of the
logo will be proportional to the donation.
The event has become
incredibly popular in the last few years. The two hundred team places went
within 7 minutes of going online. The event is publicized nationally in
local and national newspapers and magazines. The official web site is
regularly updated and we are in discussion with BBC Look East.
can donate to one or both of the charities at:
Mercy Corps: http://www.justgiving.com/team-payne-train
fill in the attached .pdf form
can contact Sam and Chris
From the organizers (www.mongolrally.com)
The Mongol Rally 2007
starts on July 21st 2007 with two hundred teams leaving from Hyde Park in
London. There is also a group of ten teams starting from Madrid.
The world is just a little bit too safe. Gone are the days where the edge
of the map called you forth to discover what lay beyond - satellite maps
and GPS have it laid out before you leave the armchair. What if you want
things to go wrong? What if you want a bit of unknown in a world full
health and safety measures? What if the words “adventure travel”
conjure images of old ladies on a guided tour to Everest base camp with
all the danger and real adventure neatly removed? What you need is the
Imagine yourself in the middle of the gargantuan Kazakh desert, your car
slowly being shredded by the dirt track your map says is a motorway,
completely lost hundreds of miles from civilisation with no back up crew
to rescue you. Just you, your wits, your increasingly brown pants, a car
that the laws of physics say shouldn't have got you past Peckham Rye and a
slightly angry looking man with a gun.
this all conspires to make you think, “my goodness that's a terribly
silly idea” the Mongol Rally is probably not your cup of salted
Mongolian tea. If, on the other hand, you think “hang on by gad, that's
exactly what I need” you've found your calling, so read on to find out
what you'll be doing this summer.
Mongol Rally isn't just about adventure; it's also about raising huge
sacks of cash for some great charities. Last year we topped £200,000 and
we hope to smash that this year.
Each team coming on the Rally raises a minimum of £1000 for the Rally
charities. You can find out more about them and the awesome work they do
on the Charity page. http://mongolrally.instituteofadventureresearch.com/index.php?page=charities
a third of the way around the earth, from London to Mongolia via a
plethora of countries most people haven't heard of in any crap car that
has an engine with no more than 1 litre of power.
Starting from Hyde Park, London, the rally finishes in the Mongolian
capital Ulaanbaatar around three weeks and a whole heap of adventure
later. It's between about 8 and 10,000 miles depending on the route you
choose to throw your crap-mobile at. We don't believe in telling you what
to do or where to go as this is supposed to be an adventure not a cosy
guided driving tour, so the world is pretty much your oyster. To get to
the end teams have gone as far north as the Arctic Circle and as far south
as Afghanistan on what can only really be described as somewhat circuitous
routes. What happens to you between London, the deserts, mountains,
bandits and wilderness is anyone's guess. In a normal year just over half
the teams make the finish line in one piece.
If you want a full support crew (or any support crew) you're in the wrong
place. If nothing goes wrong, then everything has gone wrong. You only
start having fun when you break down in the desert with only a short stick
and some chewing gum to fix your car. If your automobile completely lets
you down and all else fails, e.g. the sky has fallen on your head, you may
be able to get to Mongolia by scabbing a lift from other cars. However,
you are supposed to be on an adventure not in a nursery class so if the
sky does fall on your head, prop it up with a windscreen wiper and carry
on. If you're worried, stay at home.
We can't guarantee your
arrival at the finish line, or your safety.
Corps Mongolia has one overall strategic goal – to support rural
communities to mobilize resources to meet their economic and social needs,
and by extension, to provide a better quality of life for rural residents.
To develop, diversify and strengthen rural businesses critical to
Mongolia's agriculture sector, helping individuals, families and
communities to become more self-sufficient , diversified in their
production, and better linked to both value-added processors and local,
regional and national markets; and ,
To enhance the ability of rural communities to make informed
economic and social decisions and to act on those decisions; and to
empower them to participate in public sector decision-making from the
local to the national level.
Mercy Corps implements the following projects in Mongolia: Gobi Regional
Economic Growth Initiatives (Gobi Initiative), Rural Agribusines Support
Program (RASP) and Training, Advocacy and Networking Program.
Noble Foundation - www.cncf.org/mongolia/projects.asp
Noble travelled to Mongolia in April 1997 and pledged to raise money
return to help the plight of street children and
children in poor families in this country. Christina designed projects
around the specific Mongolian conditions and culture, while also building
on her experience in Vietnam. Initial research discovered a complex street
children problem, with children organised into gangs and surviving on
petty crime, along with an alarming increase in children
dropping out of
school throughout the country.
greatest challenge that the Foundation identified was to reach into
families and try to help them escape this cycle of poverty by helping to
keep the children in school and at home. It was from this need that the
Sponsorship Project was born.
Foundation also identified a need among children on the street who were
not part of a gang and who were trying to fend for themselves by begging
and scavenging. Some said that they dreamed of being put into prison
"because it is warm there, and they feed you". Christina
resolved to open a shelter or sanctuary for these children.
the Mongolians are so strongly traditional and so many (in the city as
well as the country) live in gers, she decided to build a Ger Village
where the children could be safe, attend local schools and grow up to be
independent, healthy adults. The Ger Village opened at the beginning of
November 1997, and the numbers of other CNCF projects
have quickly increased since this time.
Mongolia has created a successful child sponsorship program based on the
Foundation's original sponsorship program in Vietnam. The objective is to
help families who are in danger of splitting up or where children may drop
out of school due to poverty. The family receives sponsorship for a child
as long as he/she is living with the family and is in full-time education
or training. In general, only one child per family is sponsored but in
some cases, where there are many children, two may be sponsored.
sponsors are individuals or families in foreign countries who send money
(monthly, quarterly or annually depending on the most practical method of
banking) to the Foundation for the child, and in return receive a report
about the child's progress each year. The sponsor is never given the
address etc. of the child and the only communication between the sponsor
and the sponsored family is through the CNCF office. The sponsors send
US$24 per month to the Foundation for each child. US$20 is given directly
to the child or their family in local currency, US$2 is set aside for
emergency medical expenses, and the remaining US$2 is spent on
scheme is tightly controlled to ensure that money goes to the most needy
families. CNCF social workers go to the families’ homes on a regular
basis in order to assess the children’s progress at school and the
families’ living conditions.
December 2002 Christina traveled into Bulgan Aimag (Province) to take
relief supplies to families enduring a second successive harsh winter. The
terrible poverty in the countryside immediately convinced Christina to
expand the sponsorship programme into the countryside. Now children and
families in two provinces west of Ulaanbaatar are being enrolled into the
present there are more than 1,000 children sponsored in Mongolia.
The Sunshine Ger
September 1997, the Foundation established a shelter for street children
and orphans in Ulaanbaatar. The shelter consists of six residential gers
(the traditional felt tent of the Mongolian peoples), one guard ger, an
office ger, two joined gers acting as cookhouse and dining room, and one
large community ger. In addition, a 40-foot container, which was sent from
Ireland full of clothes and medical supplies, has been transformed inside
into a shower house with showers, toilets, hand basins and a laundry area.
residential ger is staffed by a Ger Mother, often a single parent herself,
who creates a loving home for the children. Older children help to care
for the younger, and assist their ger mother with simple domestic chores.
At school age the children are enrolled alongside their peers at the local
district school: learning within the community and gaining vital
qualifications for later adult life.
below school age attend the Foundation’s kindergarten, constructed in
2002 on land adjacent to the Ger Village with funds generously provided by
CNCF Belgium and staunchly supported for many years by Wetherby School in
London. The kindergarten also serves the wider community and provides
invaluable pre-school education to children of local families.
Ger Village is on the outskirts of Ulaanbaatar and is enclosed with a
large 'Hasha' (fence), which helps create a small community atmosphere.
CNCF doctors visit several times per week, and a team of two Managers,
both themselves qualified doctors, are constantly on-hand to advise,
protect and encourage the children. There are monthly outings, occasions
of great excitement and joy.
possible the Foundation seeks to reunite children with their families and
assist the family face the future together through mutual love and
In the course of our research into
the plight of children in Mongolia, a major need became apparent. The
prison system in Mongolia owes much to the Russian concepts of punishment,
and largely ignores ideas of rehabilitation, even for children in prison.
Many imprisoned children were not educated in any way. No help was given
in terms of post-release adjustment, counseling, or suggestions on how to
become independent. All this came to the attention of the Foundation when
we met a 17-year old boy who had just been admitted to the prison, less
than three months after he had been released. He said that prison was the
only life he knew or understood and so he had committed a crime to get
There is one Children's Prison in
Mongolia and it accommodates boys only. Girls are held in a separate unit
in the Women's Prison. CNCF provides full-time education at the Boys’
Prison and Foundation teachers work three days a week at the Girls’
Section of the Women’s Prison. Most children incarcerated in prison
arrive illiterate and so concentration is on reading, writing and
mathematics. The children study hard and many feel that the classes help
them to forget that they are in prison. Teaching literacy has a profound
effect on the children. They feel proud of themselves and can, at last,
communicate by letter with their families, relieving some of the
loneliness common in prisoners. The number of children admitted to the
CNCF project is now over 100 (numbers will always fluctuate depending on
the number of children admitted or released from prison).
In 2002 CNCF established a small
schoolhouse in Songino Kharkhin District of Ulaanbaatar. The school aims
to help children who have dropped of, or never had the opportunity to
enter school to pass the examinations required to rejoin their District
School. The children are mainly aged between eight and ten years old, and
in the first year of operations helped 67 children, who otherwise would
not have had the opportunity to attend school, to re-enter State
In 1998 CNCF completely renovated the
pediatric wing of the Charity Hospital, the only hospital in Ulaanbaatar,
which provides free healthcare to people without money or health
insurance. The first child inpatients were admitted to the wing in April
1999, and CNCF operates a clinic there three days a week, to provide free
health care and medication to the children in the sponsorship program and
street children. The Foundation's medical practitioners, led by Dr.
Undermaa conduct weekly medical examinations of the children at the Ger
Village, and periodical checks of the children in prison.
In 2000 CNCF entered into a
Memorandum of Understanding with the Mother and Child Research Center (‘MCRC’),
the country’s largest pediatric facility, and began operating a second
free-of-charge drop-in clinic there. To date CNCF has donated US$8900 of
equipment and supplies to assist MCRC practitioners to provide care for
Through a generous donation of a
Mercedes-Benz Unimog by Derek Ryan and supporters in Ireland, the
Foundation is able to operate a mobile night clinic for street children.
Dr. Undermaa and her team travel the city’s streets, visiting manholes
where children are known to congregate: bringing emergency medical
treatment, medical advice and small treats to children otherwise abandoned
to the ice and snow. Last winter 495 examinations took place with 414
children, only 52 of these examinations were categorized as healthy: the
others suffered from respiratory sicknesses, cuts, STDs, tuberculosis and
other poverty-related conditions.
Healthcare lectures are presented
regularly to the children in prisons and the sponsorship parents. They
cover a wide range of topics including general hygiene, first aid,
treatment for exposure, infant care, and nutrition.
Give a Ger Fund
The Give a Ger fund is an emergency
fund established to provide families in danger of becoming homeless, or
otherwise inadequately or dangerously accommodated, with a family home. A
Ger, with basic furniture, can be purchased in Mongolia for USD700. A Ger
without furniture costs USD490. In 2003 the fund purchased gers for 51
families in Ulaanbaatar and in 2004 the campaign was extended to include
the countryside, with a total of 53 families being assisted with ger
housing. The gift of a ger does far more than simply remove children
from squalid and unhealthy living conditions...