Rare Adventures was started by a team of professionals from the charity world who understood that UK charities and fundraisers wanted more from their charity challenge event provider.
Charities wanted a partner that understood that these events should be all about them, not the tour operator.
Charities also wanted to know that when their supporters were up a mountain, half way round the world, that safety standards would be the same as if they were in the UK.
Lastly, they wanted complete assurance that the values of the companies they worked with matched theirs, and that all aspects of the event supported sustainable economic and environmental development.
Fundraisers wanted to know why so much of the money they pushed hard to raise for their chosen cause went as profits into the pockets of UK suppliers. They also wanted to experience more than just a plane ride, an anonymous hotel room and bog-standard trek. As individuals, they wanted to learn about the history, the flora and fauna and the culture of the places they visit. They weren’t signing up for a package holiday- they wanted an adventure challenge worthy of the cause and their supporters’ generous donations.
So Rare Adventures decided to put together charity challenge events tailored to these needs. With specialists in expedition planning and risk management, the team worked hard with their international tour operators to provide breathtaking experiences in some of the world’s most remote and scenic locations to the UK’s highest safety standards (British Standard 8848). But more than these amazing events and the passion we have for the cultures we operate in, Rare Adventures, also decided not to retain any profits it made from public fundraising, instead investing this money in UK charities and fundraising societies. So when we say we are the UK’s leading charity challenge event provider, we hope you’ll understand what makes us different and why we’re proud to call ourselves a social enterprise.
The work we fund
Uniquely amongst Tour Operators, Rare Adventures offers all of its charity clients ‘not for profit contracts’. All of the profits associated with publically fundraised money gets returned to causes which support UK fundraising or provide the communities affected by its operations with a chance to share in the proceeds of the enterprise.
Through our projects, such as offering health insurance to porters and educational credits to their children, Rare Adventures intends to be a social pioneer in the travel and tourism market. We believe that this enterprise will be award winning and eventually force a wholesale change to the way that the industry values the contribution of those who live hand to mouth at the end of the supply chain.
The ethical agenda
Ensuring that porters, guides, cooks etc aren’t forgotten
Rare Adventures is working with charities and representative bodies to find ways of distributing value such as medical insurance and educational credits to those workers who share least in the profits of the tourism industry.
We are committed to using locally owned businesses and contributing constructively to the economic development of the regions we operate in.
We actively oppose those organisations who market the ‘western experts’ that accompany the trip, rather than building and learning from local knowledge and expertise. To this end we are committed to driving education and standards at a grassroots level, to complement the existing skill base and resources.
We offer a carbon offsetting option for all of our activities and will work with our charity clients and participants to engage meaningfully in the debate about the wider risks of climate change
We are working with all of our suppliers to fully audit all aspects of our environmental footprint. Our philosophy is simple, we must leave the places we visit better than when we found them.
Flora and fauna
Through our support for the World Wildlife Fund and anti-poaching initiatives we intend to fight vigorously to protect the world’s natural diversity and beautify. We also believe that through learning about the wildlife and species as part of adventure travel, our clients will have a richer experience of the places they visit and become active participants in conservation.