24 Feb, 2009
Posted by: Scott In: Pre-Rally
I’ve been posting a lot on the adventure aspects of the rally of late. I must admit that that is one of the big draws for me—the chance to travel to foreign lands and interact with different people and cultures. But that’s not the main goal of this trip.
As most of you probably know by now, we are in this to raise money for our main charity, Mercy Corps. Since its inception in 1979, Mercy Corps has donated over $1.5 billion in assistance to people in 106 nations across the globe. They take a “teach a man how to fish” philosophy to philanthropy—aiming at the root of the problem instead of just providing temporary assistance. Their main goals over the past thirty years have been education, medical care, training, and clean water and sanitation.
Money raised through donations and sponsorships from people like you will go towards assisting those most in need in Mongolia. Through innovative projects such as the Yak Tallow to Biofuel initiative and farming assistance programs, Mercy Corps has improved the lives of thousands of Mongolians living in some of the most inhospitable conditions on earth.
We understand that it is a tough time to give much thoughts to philanthropic causes. In fact, it may very well be the worst year in recent memory to pursue such a task. How can you donate while you are worrying about how secure your job is or if you have enough money to cover the bills? And furthermore, if you do have any money left at the end of the day why on earth would you consider donating it to help people on the other side of the earth rather than those in need in your own community, or your own country at the very least?
Well, take this for starters: during winter months (which can stretch close to half of the year), many of the poor living in the capital of Ulan Bator resort to living in the sewers to escape the bitter cold. Yes, they live in the sewers. There are no government aid programs for them, as there are in the U.S. and many other first-world nations. There are no soup kitchens. There are no halfway houses. These people would get no aid whatsoever if it wasn’t for charitable organizations such as Mercy Corps. That is why we are doing this rally across nearly one-third of the earth—to get the word out about Mercy Corps and the efforts they are taking to improve people’s lives in Mongolia and around the world.
Right now we are doing the best we can to get the word out about our cause. Each of us is investing quite a sum to be able to even join in the event, but we must also raise a good chunk of change for charity if we wish to participate. We cannot do it alone though—we need your help. Please take a minute to donate any amount via credit card to our team. All of the funds go directly to charity and are even tax-deductible if you choose. If you don’t have any funds to spare you can still assist us in getting the word out about what we’re doing: e-mail this page to your friends and family and tell anyone who’s interested about this undertaking. The more people that know what we’re doing the more change we can help bring about!
For more images of the life of the poor in Mongolia, please visit Sean Gallagher Photography (click on ‘Index’ then ‘Mongolia’ in the bottom-right).