With a little help…

As I briefly mentioned a few posts ago, we have started a ‘Logistics and Fundraising committee’. We have realised that in order to make the trip happen in the time-frame that we are planning, we need some help from others. Quite simply there are not enough hours in the day to accommodate all of the work that needs to be done, and more importantly two people alone do not have grey matter enough to think of all that can be thought.

Luckily we are blessed with the best  friends. It used to said, in the Land of my Fathers, that if you needed a prop [forward], just whistle down the mines and you’ll find plenty. Well metaphorically speaking, our scrum was deficient, so we whistled, and out of the woodwork we have recruited:

Russ Baker – Logistics and support

Trine Baker – Secretariat

Dan Tisdall – Fundraising and Events

Zoe Powell – PR and marketing

Drew Powell – Logistics and support

Paul ‘Swiss Toni’ Bettesworth – Fundraising and Events

Penny Jones – Events

John Jones – Events

Rachel – formally nominated as Treasurer

Others too have said that they will assist, and we will be tapping them for sure, and mentioning them in dispatches in due course. These guys all bring much to the table. The roles as allocated reflect their skills, but they are by no means restrictive as our small team will inevitably have to retain some flexibility in order to succeed.

The email to the chaps read along the lines of:

“……. we were originally hoping to self-support [the trip as purchase as well as the vehicle and equipment costs]  – but realistically if we are to stick to the May 2011 schedule, then quite simply we need the help of others.

That’s where you guys come in. Everyone is telling us that we can get sponsorship, but it is not an insignificant amount to raise. I make no bones about the fact that I am a bit of a numpty when it comes to the business world with its movers and shakers, pressing of the flesh and corporate golf days – and you guys all have pedigree in that arena – so we are now looking to you to provide ideas, footwork and plain old grunt in order to make this project happen.

There is probably nothing in it for you, other than realising what we can do if we pull together. But after all, part of the journey is not being entirely sure where we will eventually end up. We will probably put you on our Christmas card list too. I have attached some guidance from the Royal Geographical Society that is worth considering ahead of our meeting.

If this wasn’t a difficult enough target, I have approached a charity with a view to their piggy-backing the expedition. I have made it clear to them that we need to raise enough money to make the trip happen in the first instance; but those of you that know me will understand that I will not readily undertake such a trip without giving something back (a legacy in kind if you like). Please take some time to read the wealth of content on Motivation’s website – particularly the Africa details and the morbidity stats found in the FAQ section. I think you’ll agree that there is a real congruence here.

The project deadlines are tight, and we should at least be able to answer these prime questions at this stage, ‘Is the target feasible?’ and ‘Can we achieve it? (‘Do we have the right people?’)’. If we agree that it is and that we can, we then pretty quickly need to draft an action plan.

I can quite appreciate that we are unlikely ever to be free at the same time, and that we all have other, unavoidable commitments (we’d all be leading boring lives if we didn’t). Of course Rachel and I will make ourselves available to meet anyone ad-hoc, as needed, in order to enjoy the expertise so generously made available to us. That said, I believe that we need to maintain a series of planned meetings in order to coordinate the agenda and pace. (Otherwise there is a risk that he project will irretrievably drift). Please do feel free to commit to no more than you can actually take -on too! (Even if that includes being unable to commit to a year long programme at this time) The last thing we want is for anyone not to enjoy taking part in this endeavour. From the start we need to be open with each other if we are to succeed.

Our sincerest thanks in advance

Richard & Rachel x”

Anyway, tonight we met (with a few apologies) and got the ball rolling. As you can see we formally adopted www.motivation.org.uk as our chosen charity. Motivation is an international disability and development charity working in low-income countries to enhance the quality of life of people with mobility disabilities. I’ll be writing a bit more on this fantastic organisation in a discreet post – it also deserves a few pages of its own on our site too – so please do check back for those – but in the meantime visit their own pages….

The Worldmade Rough Terrain A three wheel active wheelchair with a large rubber castor wheel and long wheelbase which allows for safe and stable propulsion over uneven ground.

We will post details of our fundraising enterprises on the site and in the blog as well as any other media that we can use. I think that the hard work has just begun. Personally I am thrilled that Motivation have agreed to let us support them.

We also agreed a Project name ” the Indlovu Drive”

NEW Logo Launched for the ‘Indlovu 2011′ Expedition – The wheel links with www.motivation.org.uk, who you now know we are supporting on this trip.

Why the Bull and Cow Elephants?  The Carruthers Guide to ‘The Wildlife of Southern Africa’ says of Loxodonta Africana (Indlovu Zulu) “….Rough grey skin, often coloured by dust or mud.. Complex social life. Drinks daily if possible.” ‘Nuff said – if you Overland you’ll understand.

Isilwane, The Animal Tales and Fables of Africa

by: Credo Mutwa

“Reincarnation of Murdered Gods

African people regard the elephant with a very deep reverence. It is an animal believed to be more than just a beast – it is considered a spiritual entity. The Zulu, Tswana and Tsonga names for the elephant all mean “the forceful one,” “the unstoppable one.” In Zulu the name for elephant is Indlovu, from the verb dlovu, which means, “to crash through,” “to pierce savagely,” to ”act with extreme brute force.”

Russ, you were right, we’ve had our first meeting and it might yet “go down in the ‘anals of history’!

Thanks one and all – from both Rachel and I – you lovely, lovely people. x

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