Germany To Jordan Fundraising Car Rally
We’ve come across this fundraising event idea through friends of ours in Southern Germany. It looks like this kind of event requires quite a bit of planning, but when you look at the website for this car rally fundraiser (some pages are available in English) you can see that they’re having so much fun – participation grew from just a handful of teams four years ago to about 70 teams this year – that it’s well worth it!
What is this fundraiser all about?
All donations and profits arising from this rally go towards building a cheese factory to help poor families in Al Rabiat in Jordan (near Amman) become self sufficient and support themselves. The income from previous rallies was used to buy the land to build the factory on. Other sponsors will donate training to run the cheese factory and a solar power plant to provide electricity. All funds go through the World Food Program which administers the project in Jordan and handles all the bureaucracy. Last year’s rally brought in 80,000 Euros (about $100,000)!
This fundraiser began as a crazy low budget answer to the Paris-Dakar Rally, while at the same time promoting international understanding and communication and also supporting a good cause. It leads from Oberstaufen in Southern Germany to Amman in Jordan. The winner is the team that reaches Amman with all its cars safe and sound and has solved all the tasks requested in the road book. The first prize is a camel! Unfortunately the camel must stay in Jordan, but it can be visited at any time by the winners…
What are the rules?
The rules are that each car used in the rally has to be at least 20(!) years old and cost less than 2,000 Euros. Teams have to sleep in tents, or in hotels that cost no more than 10 Euros a night (about $13). Why the low budget cars and facilities? This ensures that the rally truly remains open for everyone to participate, which was part of the ground rules when this fundraiser started in 2006.
What about sponsors?
The organizers of this rally had been approached by a production company to do a reality show. They gracefully declined though, after they found out that they would have been required to stage personal drama and several car wrecks. An accompanying reality show would’ve probably brought in thousands more in revenue and more sponsors, but because it would have seriously hampered the spirit of the rally, the organizers of the fundraiser decided not to take the offer.
Is this fundraiser right for your group?
It seems that the hardest part about this fundraiser are the legal issues that arise out of a non-profit project that straddles more than one country. Unless your fundraising project also involves more than one country, this fundraiser requires planning much like many other larger fundraising events: you need to form a planning and oversight committee, define rules for participants, define meeting places, prizes, sponsors, get permits and definitely put up a website for information and updates.
So if you’re tired of conventional fundraising events and you think you can create interest among your members and potential supporters, why not go for it! Would you have only a few teams/drivers, or dozens? Would your rally go between neighborhoods, cities, states or countries? Would you have local media coverage, national, or even international media coverage?
If you’re deciding to do a fundraising event like this one, please let us know and we’ll help promote it through our website!
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