Have you ever wanted more? | Ever get that feeling you want something more out of your local club, but can’t quite put your finger on it? What if you teamed up with a local charity to make help terminally ill children and their families? That’s exactly what North Diamonds Club did.
My good friend Bodo Engemann tells me, a couple years back, at their annual Christmas party, they found themselves in a member’s garage, looking at a table covered with gift bags full of all the random goodies handed out by generous sponsors during events over the course of the year. They got to talking about a local childrens’ hospice called Kinder-Hospiz Sternenbrueke, which helps families provide end-of-life care for their terminally children and decided to host a little auction. At the end of the night, they’d raised about US$400 (more than 300€) for this noble cause. Betting on pens and lighters.
THAT WAS 2009
In 2010, they held a raffle and spread the word. They sold all 500 tickets – at 1€ each – within an hour. Even though most of their group was present that night, those who couldn’t attend called in and bought tickets by phone. Some even paid more.
In 2011, the decided to organize a car show. Tuning 4 Kids was born. It rained all day the day before, flooding the field where they had planned to host the event. Fortunately, a local market offered to let them use their parking lot without too much begging.
And it continued to rain. As Bodo put it, “At the day, it didn’t rain – it was worse than raining. Storm, water from above and the sides, but it’s unbelievable: 36 cars came to support us. At the end of the day, we had close to 1,000€ (about US$1,300).”
Fast forward to 2013. 160 cars showed up for T4K, raising an incredible €3,000 (almost US$5,000). Today, they have several sponsors, everyone coming together to help Sternenbrueke make a difference in the lives of those less fortunate beyond their control.
WHAT WE TALK ABOUT
- how the initial idea turned into the major, annual event it is today
- how Sternenbrueke helps children & families
- a little bit about how the German healthcare system works
- what exactly goes on at T4K beyond a car show
- T4K’s sponsors & how they contribute
- plans for T4K 2014 & what it will take to achieve them
MAKING THE WORLD A BETTER PLACE
Bodo reminds us, “There is one important thing we’d like you to remember: We are all a part of a community, a country, it doesn’t matter where you live. Everybody, everywhere in the world has an organisation in his or her neighborhood in need of support.” Bodo also supports a similar project of the Polish Mitsubishi community, the Mitsumaniakis. This is gearheads united.
“So all readers of Gearbox Magazine – and indeed all the gearheads of the world,” Bodo closes, “think a few minutes about when and where you can help. It doesn’t take a lot of money; just a good idea and enough people willing to spend some time on it – and our world will come closer together. And after that, you will feel much better. Even in our daily lives, we can find time to make the world a better place.”
Ordinarily, this is where I’d link you to our subscription form. The full story will be in issue 1.07, building this weekend. Instead, I’d like to encourage you to get with your local gearhead buddies, see if you can’t find a deserving charity in YOUR area, and look into organizing your own event to help make the world a better place. Like Bodo said, it doesn’t take a lot of money; just a good idea and enough people willing to spend some time on it.