Wednesday, December 21, 2011

28 Mile Walk in December!

Reece Wilson, 17 from Cottingham, walked 28 miles from Hull to Spurn Hill on December 12th to raise £2000 to fund his Raleigh International expedition to India in March 2012. So far he has raised £243 on his Justgiving page.

While in India, Reece will be working on infrastructure and sanitation projects, supplying toilets to the Malligalli village. Within this village there are 250 families and of these 15 families have a toilet. The lack of adequate sanitation is a major problem in Malligalli because this affects the local water supply and therefore has an adverse effect on the health on the local community.

If you would like to sponsor Reece:

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

The Blindfolded Marathon

Tim Lok Chen Haw, 19, ran the Allianz Penang Bridge International Marathon with his eyes blindfolded!

Lok is not blind — he covered his eyes with cloth to highlight glaucoma, an eye disorder of the optic nerve which is the second leading cause of blindness worldwide.

He was raising money for his Raleigh expedition in Borneo in 2012 and the Malaysia Glaucoma Society.

With the help of a few 'guides' to ensure he stayed on route, he completed the marathon in a fantastic five hours and 40 minutes.

So far Lok has raised RM3,000 with the aim of reaching RM20,000 through his inspiring marathon.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Thanks Tom!

We would like to say a big thank you to Tom Williams, a Raleigh alumni, who has raised £700 for us to build bio-gas units in India by driving a Fiat Punto he bought for £45 through Europe. This 53% of his £1400 fundraising target.

Raleigh International has built 15 bio-gas units in the Nilgiri district in south India and has supplied sustainable energy to local communities, which reduces the impact of firewood consumption. Methane from cows is captured and stored for gas cooking, as a sustainable source. An additional by-product of bio-gas units is the milk produced by the cow which can be sold on and an income is produced.

If you would like to contribute to Tom’s bio-gas fundraising please go to:

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Prehistoric Fun-draising on the Jurassic Coast Walk

On the weekend of October 8-9 a group of 55, made up of Raleigh alumni, future venturers and VMs, and Raleigh staff headed out to the UK’s historic south coast to undertake a 50 km 2-day long trek from Weymouth to Lyme Regis.

With the sun mostly on our faces and the wind occasionally at our backs, we walked along the coastal path, reminiscing about expeditions, catching up on life post-Raleigh, filling in to-be venturers and VMs on some essential tips, breaking out tents and roll mats, and most importantly, fundraising.

All the alumni were participating to raise money for the Raleigh International Bursary Award which financially supports those for whom a Raleigh expedition would otherwise only be a dream. They were able to raise enough for 2 people to be given bursaries in 2012! The future venturers and VMs joined to help boost their own fundraising for expedition, and many are now within reach of their fundraising targets.

If you missed out on participating this time around, be sure to watch the Raleigh International website and Facebook page for updates on what is to come in 2012. We hope to see you there!

The whole group with Richard Drax, MP, who officially started the walk:

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Fundraising with Alexander!

Alexander Clarke from Loughborough went on expedition to India this summer and wanted to share some of his fundraising efforts with us here on our fundraising blog – which he found invaluable when planning his fundraising. This is his advice:

I found out that I was going on expedition to India just three months before my departure date, so I had little time to plan my fundraising to reach my target. I was very keen to do a physical challenge in preparation for my expedition and I chose to participate in my local 10k run, which was a big challenge for me as I had shown no prior interest in running before. I asked for sponsorship for the run from my friends and family Additionally, I attended a few village fetes where I organised charity raffles with some great prizes very kindly donated from local businesses. The top prize was a full day for two people at a local spa resort!

This ia Alexander at his charity raffle at a village fete.

I came up with my fundraising ideas after looking on the Raleigh International website, where there were some really inspiring ideas. Also I felt less daunted by my fundraising target after I read about other people’s fundraising activities and how they reached their target. I planned my fundraising activities to ensure I could inform people about Raleigh International, especially at the village fete where I would reach an audience that may never have heard about Raleigh before. It was a great way to network too - I met a lady who suggested that I should contact the charity she worked for asking for a donation. As a result they gave me a donation that contributed towards my fundraising target.

I not only achieved my fundraising goal but also gained some new skills that I can apply to my future career such as organisational and communication skills. I found I got a great response to my fundraising and everybody I spoke to seemed interested in my expedition to India. They were willing to help however they could, whether through advice, a donation or a prize for the raffle.

My fundraising efforts really paid off as I have just got back from an amazing time in India. My favourite moment was during the community phase in Kotapadi, where we were in groups of threes building toilets for the local community. This was to improve the health and sanitation of the people living in this community. I felt that I got to know the other two people really well as we were working alongside each other and we made fantastic progress. The lady’s house we were working on, Krishnaveni, invited us in for Chai and showed us her wedding album, even though we did not share the same language it was a unique moment. It was moments like that that made the community phase so special and different to other two phases with Raleigh.

My tips for any budding fundraisers out there are:
• Always have your Raleigh T-shirt and some info about what you’re doing with Raleigh.
• Always carried business cards with a link to your JustGiving page and more information about Raleigh.
• Always keep friends & family updated about your situation. I would keep everyone updated about my fundraising progress through Facebook & Twitter.
• I also tried to be creative with the updates I sent out, I made a video montage of myself training
• Ask friends & family for help. I was amazed at how much my friends and family helped me with my fundraising.
• Be organised.
• And lastly enjoy it! It's going to be hard, challenging at times, but I actually really enjoyed telling people about what I was going to do.

Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed fundraising and I felt that it got me into the Raleigh spirit ready for my expedition to India!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Wacky Fundraiser Champion!

In order to raise funds for her Raleigh International expedition to Borneo in the spring, Rachel Magnus had a very original – and wacky idea. She decided to gain sponsorship to dress up as a banana and visit all of London’s famous landmarks. This outlandish idea was voted Wackiest Fundraiser by everyone here at Raleigh International HQ and on our Facebook page!

She came up with the idea after a long brain storming session as she was keen to come up with a fundraising idea that would be both lucrative and fun. Dressing up as a banana and visiting all of London’s landmarks was a great idea as it was cheap to organise and would generate a lot of interest because it was such an unusual fundraising activity.

Rachel had a great time during her time as a banana in London. She found that her friends and family were all interested in why she was doing it, because it is not something you see every day, and therefore helped spread Raleigh International’s good name.

The day was a huge success, raising about £900 from sponsorships from her friends and family. Unfortunately, she was not allowed to use collection boxes during the day as she did not have a permit.

Rachel really loved her expedition to Borneo and she would definitely go again
It's a great challenge, you experience a completely different culture, you see that you really are helping the communities out there, and you make such great friends. “

Her favourite memory is a party that the locals held for all the volunteers on their last night on phase in Kudat on the beach where they presented us all with a necklace which they had been personally made for them. She said that it was a special experience and one she will never forget.

Hannah’s advice for any budding fundraisers? You can literally do anything, nothing is too crazy! If you are stuck for cash, think of doing something that you may do on a day-to-day basis anyway but spice it up in some way - like Rachel did by dressing up as a banana. Also, Rachel recommends contacting your old schools or local communities to see if you can hold a bake sale for instance as they can be very supportive.

I hope Rachel’s fundraising exploits help to inspire future fundraisers who are stuck for ideas!!

Please check out our fundraising page on our website for more information:

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Volunteer attempts to forward-roll over seven bridges

We've heard of some innovative fundraising ideas here at Raleigh International but we have been particularly impressed by the most recent idea from Ed Gregory, a volunteer manager for this autumn’s expedition in Borneo. He is planning to forward-roll across the seven bridges of Sydney! That’s 2.7km of forward rolls on concrete in one day!

On Saturday, 10th September 2011, he will forward-roll over the Sydney Harbour Bridge, Pyrmont Bridge, Anzac Bridge, Fig Tree Bridge, Tarban Creek Bridge, Gladesville Bridge and Iron Cove Bridge. This is something that has never been attempted before so as well as raising money for a good cause, Ed will also be breaking a world record!

Ed, 28, will be volunteering for Raleigh International as a project manager. His role will include leading a volunteer project in a rural community in Borneo whilst also managing groups of young people in a cross-cultural environment.

He said: “I came up with seven bridges challenge to raise money to directly fund a charity expedition in Borneo in just a few weeks. I will be giving Raleigh International 10 weeks of my life to work on projects like building rainwater filtration systems, building a conservation park as well as working with local communities on education.”

Ed is a professional actor from Australia and has spent much of the last four years working for the internationally acclaimed Blue Man Group in their Broadway show New York as well as touring in Europe and the Caribbean. He is currently taking an eight month career break to travel and follow his other passions - the environment and charity work.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

How far can you cycle?

I remember the day when I heard I was accepted as a volunteer manager at Raleigh. It's just incredible. I'd heard that it was hard to get into international development so I was grateful and more or less amazed to hear that I got in. They even told me I was more than qualified! I was ready to make the most of the opportunity.

Here’s a little about myself. My name is Joe Arthurs, British, and I have just decided to have another career change. I had been working in finance when I decided to retrain as a carpenter. I wanted something more fulfilling. However, I found that this still wasn’t enough and I decided to move into the not for profit sector. I started to volunteer and work part time at a few different charities. For me it felt like I needed a positive change. I never went on a gap year and I had the urge to travel – I’ve always wanted to go away but I wanted to find an organisation that I cared about to get the most out of it.

Whilst being on a Positive Change seminar, I heard about Raleigh for the first time. I met some amazing characters and heard some unbelievable stories. Raleigh seemed like the perfect opportunity. It covered leadership and working with young people.

Right, enough about this and let me talk about the next step, the reason why this blog exists: to do the actual fundraising to cover the costs to go on a Raleigh expedition. Although it’s still far away (my expedition will be in autumn 2012), I’ve decided to start thinking about it right away. You know what my very first thoughts were? My friends and family have no money. So what am I going to do?! Because it’s so far away, some of my friends have agreed to donate £5 a month between now and then. I’ve got a house party one weekend where some bands will be playing and I will be using this as a way to fundraise more. It’s quite hard though, because I’ve been so busy. I did some fundraising in the past, although this was quite minimal. I’ve raised awareness for some charities but done very little fundraising. My fundraising target is £10,000 because I want to give as much as possible to Raleigh – it’s such a good cause. So far I’ve raised about £200 so I’ve got a long way to go!

Then I came up with a new idea. To some ears it might sound like a crazy idea, something you would never think of straight away. Yes, I’m going to cycle all the way to South Korea!

In the space of a month I was made redundant, split up with my girlfriend and had to move out of my flat. I thought ‘I’m a free man’ so I should go for it! The idea spiralled out of control. Originally I was planning to go to Mongolia with some friends but now that’s not worked out so I’m heading to South Korea where I plan to teach secondary school children English before I start Raleigh.

So this is my plan: I will start my journey in April 2011 and it will take me 12 months to get to South Korea. I plan to travel through France, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Iran, Pakistan, India, South East Asia, Nepal and China (where I’m hoping to meet up with Raleigh China) before settling in South Korea. This may of course change depending on visas and other entry requirements. I’ve been advised not to plan too far ahead but just to take one day at a time. I’ve bought all the kit (25kg) that I need but to be honest I have done very little training. I’m not planning on setting a world record!

During my journey I’ll be doing some couch surfing. I’ve got a few friends enroute, mainly in Europe, that I’ll be calling on. I will also be carrying some camping equipment with me too.

Since I will be leaving quite soon I have planned to work as much as I can and basically save money. I want to do as much fundraising as possible before I leave, however I will continue the fundraising whilst on my journey. During my last days in country I will say goodbye to my family and friends. There’s a lot to organise! I will keep everyone up to date by sending regular emails and keeping in touch with Raleigh all along the way. I will probably send out some nice videos of my cycle journey as well!

Looking back at the moment when I heard I was accepted as a volunteer manager up until now, I can tell you that I’m already having an amazing time. For everyone out there that is struggling with fundraising: just go for it! Ignore the fact that you are asking for money. If it’s a cause that you believe in, then people will be happy to donate. You can make things happen.

If you’d like to know more, follow my blog, donate (any donations are more than appreciated!) or just want to visit my fundraising page go to: