Archive for December, 2007

Darwin to Melbourne Thank You Camel Expedition 2008-2009

December 27, 2007

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N.T. News 1.3.08

Darwin to Melbourne Thank You Camel Expedition 2008-2009

Darwin to Melbourne Thank You Camel Expedition 2008-2009

Hosted by:

Russell Osborne And Ros Consoli on behalf of the Children First Foundation

Date and time:

Sunday, 23 March 2008 at 9:30 AM

Location name:

Darwin City

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Darwin to Melbourne Thank You Camel Expedition 2008-2009

December 26, 2007
Darwin to Melbourne
Camel Expedition


The Darwin to Melbourne “Thank-you” Camel Expedition will leave on Easter Sunday 2008 from Parliament House Darwin City, through the Western Australian Deserts, Northern Territory Deserts, South Australian Deserts, Country Victoria and through the City of Melbourne from Government House to the Royal Children’s Hospital as a show of “thank you” to Moira Kelly and the Children First Foundation, its associated bodies and volunteers. The expedition will end at the Children First Foundation residence in Kilmore, Victoria for the children in residence to meet the camels.
The camel trek will:

Take approximately one and a half years to complete
Cover approximately 6000 kilometres
Trek through some of Australia’s remotest Deserts
Cross the continent from north to south
Find those who can say, “Thank-you” to Moira Kelly and her teams
Help some children with critical illnesses from countries where their future otherwise would be doubtful
Involve corporations and individuals in a fund-raising expedition
Celebrate people and organisations such as Children First Foundation for what they do from their hearts.

“That is what this camel expedition is about…………”
The aims of the Expedition are as follows:
To create heightened awareness of the Children First Foundation, its members and the work of the organisation, associated bodies and volunteers.
To raise funds along route for the Children First Foundation with the intention of assisting a child / children in need. (Target: $100,000)
To gather as many people along route to walk with the camel expedition through the towns and cities as a show of “thank-you” to Moira Kelly, the Children First Foundation, associated bodies and volunteers for their work and efforts.
The objectives of the expedition are:
Complete a trans-continental crossing using six camels and equipment over a two year period.
Create as much media attention for the expedition to raise awareness of the work and efforts of Moira Kelly and the Children First Foundation’s work with children in need.
Complete the ($100,000) fundraising target to assist the Children First Foundation and its work.
Recognise, through all media, the sponsors of the expedition before, during and after the trek.
Involve residents of towns and cities in the “Thank-you” expedition.
Who is Moira Kelly
and the
Children First Foundation?


Moira Kelly AO – Moira Kelly is the Executive Director of the Children First Foundation.
Moira says "It is a funny world we live in really that determines what passport you own determines whether you live or die, so someone really has to change that … we really are not born equal.
Moira Kelly started her selfless contributions to the less fortunate at the age of 13.  Since then, she has dedicated her life to underprivileged children from all around the world.
Moira has an impressive and extraordinary record of helping others.  Some highlights include working with Mother Theresa in Calcutta, AIDS volunteer in Victoria, helping Kalahari Bushmen in Botswana, working in soup kitchens in Johannesburg and nursing AIDS babies and feeding the homeless in the Bronx.
When Moira was 32 she organised two Bosnian children for medical treatment in Australia, in which the beginnings of the Children First Foundation were laid.  Since then through the Children First Foundation, many hundreds of children from some of the poorest regions of the globe have undertaken life changing and life saving operations in Australia, America, England, Ireland and Canada because of the work and efforts of the Children First Foundation, associated bodies, medical specialists and a huge team of selfless volunteers.
For more information, you can click on the link to the Children First Foundation above or go to
The Route: 
(According to Trek Progress)


Northern Territory:

Darwin Parliament House Darwin to Katherine along the Stuart Highway.
Katherine to Halls Creek(W.A.) along the Victoria Highway.
Western Australia:
Kununurra to Halls Creekto Wiluna via the Canning Stock Route and through some of the harshest deserts in the world.
Wiluna to Uluru (Ayers Rock) via the Great Central Highway.
Northern Territory:
Uluru to Alice Springs via Watarka (Kings Canyon)along the Mereenie Loop.
Alice Springsto Marla via the Stuart Highway.
South Australia:
The expedition travels through some of the harshest desert country in South Australia from the township of Marla to William Creek, the last stop before the tourist road to Lake Eyre, (the worlds largest salt lake), to Maree via the historic Oodnadatta Track. The expedition then takes route  through the south east corner of South Australia through Lyndhurst, Leigh Creek, Parachilna, Hawker, Peterborough, Burra, Morgan and finally through Renmark.
Mildura To Echuca via Robinvale to Swan Hill to Kerang   to Echuca
Along the Murray Valley Highway. From Echuca to Shepparton Via: Barep, Pederick, Wyuna, Kotupna, Kaarimba, Mundoona and Bunbartha to  Shepparton
From Shepparton to Benalla to Mansfield along the Midland Highway.
From Mansfield to Woods Point along the Mansfield to Woods Point Road via Piries, Howqua, Jamison, Kevington, Knockwood, Gaffneys Creek, and the A1 Mine Settlement. From Woods Point to Moe via Matlock, Aberfeldy, Beardmore, Parkers Corner, Erica, Moondarra to Leongatha along the Strzelecki Highway via Trafalgar, Thorpdale, Mirboo Nth and Berrys Creek. From Moe to Leongatha. From Leongatha to Yanakie via Dumbalk, Meeniyan, Foster Nth and Foster. Yanakie to Wilsons Promontory and walking to Korrumburra. Kurrumburra to Frankston via Bena, Loch, Tooradin, Pearcedale, and Baxter.
The final leg of the expedition before reaching the capital of Victoria, Melbourne city, travels along the Nepean Highway via the suburbs of Seaford, Carrum, Bonbeach, Chelsea, Edithvale to Mordialloc. Continuing to St Kilda along Beach Road via Parkdale, Beaumaris, Black Rock, Sandringham, Hampton, and Brighton. Then along the Esplanade, the beach track, Head Street, New Street, Hotham Street and Glen Eira Road to Caulfield Grammar Schoolin preparation for the journey to Government House. Back along Glen Eira Road, to Brighton Road, St Kilda Road, Anzac Avenue and arriving at Victorias’ Government House.

The major leg of the expedition where our main aim for the journey to gather as many people willing to say thank-you to Moira Kelly and the Children First Foundation, associated bodies, volunteers and supporters of the Foundation by walking with the expedition members and the camels from Government House along Government House Road, Anzac Avenue, St Kilda Road, Swanston Street ( Melbourne CBD), Victoria Street, Elizabeth Street, Flemington Road to the Royal Children’s Hospital.


Leaving Melbourne for Kilmore:
Sydney Road, Bell Street, Spring Street, High Street, Epping Rd, Woodstock along Merriang Road, Epping / Kilmore Road, through Wallan East and finally to Kilmore (CFF Residence).
The Camels:

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The camels have been hand selected over a period of five years and especially trained for the expedition at the Explore the Outback Camel Safaris, William Creek   under the instruction of Australia’s foremost cameleer, Mr Phil Gee.
The Cameleers:

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Russell Osborne
has been involved with camels and the industry since 1999. Involvement came about specifically with the expedition in mind. The concept of the expedition was born over ten years ago and since then, Russell has been learning the ropes, so to speak, of wild camel capturing, handling, training and camel string operations in desert conditions.
Working as a tour guide for Connections Safarisin the Northern Territory’s Kakadu National Park, Nitmiluk National Park and Litchfield National Park as well as  Cameleer for the Explore the Outback Camel Safaris, William Creek, S.A. Also been involved in training wild camels for the Frontier Camel Farm in Alice Springs.
Russell has no doubt in his mind of the potential such an expedition has for the Children First Foundation and the children they help and is looking forward to seeing who else in the wider community  is also willing to say “Thank-you” to Moira Kelly, those with the CFF, associated bodies and volunteers through the Darwin to Melbourne “Thank-you” Camel Expedition 2008-2009.

Ros Consoli became involved with camels in 2004 when she met Russell and his camels. She got her first camel in 2005 at the Wild Camel Handling Course, ran by Phil Gee from Explore the Outback Camel Safaris. She joined Russell to operate the camel safaris in the Outback of South Australia.
Ros is a firm believer of the aims and objectives of the expedition and has learnt all of the skills needed for such a trans-continental expedition. Her nature is loved by all who come in contact with her and her way with the camels is based upon sheer trust between her and the camels.
Tour guiding for Connection Safaris in Kakadu National Park, Nitmiluk National Park and Litchfield National Park and for Explore The Outback Camel Safaris, Ros is armed with the skills and knowledge needed for the expedition.
Studied in Natural Resources, her main focus is on the wild camel population in Australia and the emerging camel industry. Also involved in training wild camels for the Frontier Camel Farm in Alice Springs.

The  Sponsorship:


Sponsorship for the duration of the expedition will take form in three ways:
Direct support to the Children First Foundation via the “Thank-you Expedition” website.
Donation en-route of the expedition. (Receipt for monies received and recorded in the coffee table book and other material arising from the completion of the expedition).
Sponsorship of equipment and supplies for the expedition. (Recognition space of company logo’s on camel saddles, bags, blankets and other equipment, coffee table book, The “Thank-you Expedition” website and other material arising from the completion of the expedition available ).
Media of Event:
Media for this expedition will take place in the following ways:
Local, national and international newspapers notified with articles written, with sponsorship recognition.
Local, national and international television stations notified
Documentary created with sponsorship recognition
Coffee Table Book Created with sponsorship recognition
Magazine Articles written with sponsorship recognition
Corporate and Business Sponsorship Logo’s on camel blankets, saddles and saddle bags.
Posters promoting the expedition and it’s intentions, with sponsorship recognition.
Flyers promoting the expedition an it’s intentions, with sponsorship recognition.
Media opportunities
The media opportunities for the expedition are immense as the expedition progresses. Starting in Darwin, media opportunities will be available in towns and cities along the journey involving newspapers, magazines, radio and television.
The camels will be dressed in Traditional Indian Camel Costumes as they walk through Darwin, Alice Springs and Melbourne.
Complete with bells and coloured decorations on the camels, the selected Indian exhibition blankets will have the purpose of the expedition stated and the sponsors logo’s attached.*
It is intended the media will be of national and international status
Local Councils Contacted
(according to trek progress)
Northern Territory
Darwin City Council
Palmerston City Council
Pine Creek Community Council
Katherine Town Council
Timber Creek Community Council
Western Australia
Shire of Wyndham-East Kimberley
Shire of Halls Creek
Wiluna Shire Council
Leonora Shire Council
Laverton Shire Council
Warburton – Ngaanyatjarra Council
Northern Territory
Docker River Community Council
Alice Springs Town Council
South Australia
Outback Areas Community Trust
Peterborough District Council
Renmark Paringa Council
Mildura Rural City Council    City Of Kingston
Swan Hill Rural City Council    Bayside City Council
Shepparton City Council     Glen Eira City Council
Benalla Rural City Council    City of Port Phillip
Mansfield Shire Council     Melbourne City Council
Latrobe City Council     Moonee Valley City Council
East Gippsland Shire Council    Mitchell Shire Council
Bass Coast Shire Council
Frankston City Council

Organisations / Persons Contacted:


Children First Foundation, Royal Children’s Hospital, Northern Territory Government, Western Australian Government, South Australian Government, Victorian Government, Governor Of Victoria, Administrator of the Northern Territory, Northern Territory Tourism, Western Australian Tourism, South Australian Tourism, Victorian Tourism, Tourism Australia, Territory Police, Western Australian Police, South Australian Police, Victorian Police, Department Of Indigenous Affairs, Aboriginal Affairs Planning Authority, Caulfield Grammar School, Prime Minister of Australia, Governor General of Australia.
Chambers Of Commerce contacted:
Top End Region, Katherine Region, Central Australian Region.
Chamber of Commerce and Industry W.A.
Kununurra Chamber of Commerce and Industry
Halls Creek Chamber of Commerce
Wiluna REPS Chamber of Commerce and Industry W.A.
Business S.A.
Victorian Employers Chamber Of Commerce and Industry
Mildura Chamber of Commerce
Shepparton Chamber of Commerce
Leongatha Chamber of Commerce
Frankston Business Chamber
Contacting Us
For any inquiry, sponsorship information, willingness to say thank-you to Moira and her teams of volunteers by a willingness to help please contact:
Russell Osborne and Ros Consoli
The Darwin to Melbourne
Thank-you Camel Expedition 2008-2009
P.O. Box 4155,
Darwin, 0801,
Northern Territory,

Mobile: 0428 30 4005

Sponsors / supporters
N.T. Tourism

nt logo 

Tourism NT markets and influences the development of the Northern Territory as a competitive and compelling travel destination for the continuing benefit of all Territorians.

Tourism NT works with three main partners and stakeholders to achieve these outcomes:

  1. Tourism industry partners who work with Tourism NT to market the destination interstate and overseas
  2. The travel industry that provides the necessary coordination for working with wholesalers, retail agents and airlines to facilitate the distribution of Territory travel products
  3. Tourism NT provides the Northern Territory Government, through the Minister for Tourism, with policy and service delivery advice


 Southern Cross Television
 Southern Cross Darwin reaches a potential audience of more than 100,000 people. Southern Cross Central is a satellite delivered service with coverage reaching more than 400,000 people throughout the Northern Territory, rural Queensland and parts of NSW, Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania.

Both services have program affiliations with the Seven Network, delivering successful programs including Blue Heelers, Home and Away, All Saints, Harry’s Practice, Ground Force and Better Homes and Gardens. Exclusive coverage of ‘must watch’ events, such as the Olympic Games through to 2008 and the Australian Open Tennis, is also delivered.

Despite its infancy, Southern Cross Darwin holds a 40% audience share in the two station Northern Territory capital market. Southern Cross Central enjoys a 58% share of audience viewing in remote parts of inland Australia.

Australian Geographic Society


 Each year, a portion of the Australian Geographic journal’s profits are dedicated to the Australian Geographic Society, which is committed to supporting scientific research, protecting and fostering a love for our environment and natural heritage, encouraging the spirit of discovery and adventure and spreading knowledge of Australia to Australians and the world.

Over the past 20 years, the Australian Geographic Society has sponsored more than 1500 individuals and organisations.

The Society is a non-profit organisation and 100 per cent of all donations it receives go directly to Society-sponsored projects.

Explore the Outback Camel Safaris



Our Explore the Outback camel safaris are based in the central Australian deserts near William Creek along the Oodnadatta Track (Lake Eyre, South Australia), and operate from April through to October every year.

We employ experts in outback desert ecology and cultural history to lead the safaris to provide you with a rewarding and educational adventure.

Entirely self contained, our camels carry everything including water, food, sleeping equipment and most importantly, you. We travel into highly valued pristine desert landscapes where remoteness and unspoilt wilderness will surround you.

Desert Dwellers



Desert Dwellers are purveyors of quality camping equipment, established in 2001 and have grown to be the largest camping equipment store in Central Australia.

If we don’t have it – you don’t really need it!

Desert Dwellers staff are happy campers – if you want information and advice about camping in the Centre – just ask, because we’ve been there and we’ll tell you where to go!



‘Our story’ is actually more than 300 stories – those of the communities we serve. Each of them is different and each has its own needs and priorities. As a retail banker to their families and businesses, we certainly help to make each community tick. But we like to do more – we want to engage with our communities to find out if there are other ways we can contribute to their prosperity. Why? Because successful communities are great places in which to run successful businesses like ours.


We will be able to help you find the best suited shade solution for your situation as we specialise in fully customised shade sails for both domestic and commercial applications as well as off the shelf options such as 4 or 5 metre shade umbrellas.

Special Thanks

Victorian Tourism


Tourism Victoria is a vibrant and dynamic State Government statutory authority actively marketing Victoria as a premier tourism destination both domestically and internationally.





To unite Australians in prizing their country’s past achievements, and in recognising and igniting its extraordinary future prospects.


  AODC Mission


To carry forward the philosophies and processes initiated by 2002 – Australia’s Year of the Outback and continue generating recognition for the spirit of the Outback and the land, and a nationwide awakening to the massive contribution of rural, regional and remote Australia to this country’s economic, social and cultural development, and the vast array of productive prospects and attractions it offers.


At Connections, we strive to offer travel experiences with a difference, and have been doing so for more than 30 years. We can take you through just about every corner of Australia, around tropical Fiji, plus we have the North & South Islands of New Zealand well and truly covered! And from 2008, we will be adding a number of unique new experiences further afield.


 Katherine & District Show Society Inc

Katherine & District Show Society Inc



Alice Springs preparations

December 14, 2007
Hot Hi everyone,
Well its certainly hotting up here in Alice Springs. The camels are all well and getting fat in preparation for the expedition. The saddles are being made. All of the equipment is being collected and final parts of the paperwork is being completed.
The reality of the expedition is that this is the real work of an expedition. The preparation is most important as it lessens the chance of mistakes and mishaps.
The camels are in a paddock which has cars, motor bikes, buses, trucks and trains going past all of the time. The planes coming into Alice Springs almost land on the camels (well not quite but they are very low flying overhead). This is excellent for them to get used to all of what they are about to undertake over the next two years.
I’m amazed where this expedition has already gone to without having even started from Darwin (Departure Date: 23/3/08 from Darwins Parliament House). Dear and trusted friends of ours currently living in Cairns emailed us to let us know that the expedition was written up in the local newspaper there. Also, recently we were on the front page of the Kimberley Echo in Western Australia, with a write up on the inside pages. I suppose this sort of thing will just happen.
The media is an important part of this expedition as they assist the information and purpose of the expedition to be distributed to the national and international public.
The more people who know about it the more sucessful it will be.
Our Sponsors have been terrific with their assistance to the expedition.
N.T. Tourism
Australian Geographic Society
Explore the Outback Camel Safaris
Desert Dwellers
have all been just so supportive, along with many people and government bodies all over Australia.
There is still a lot of planning and preparation to go and the truth is we are really looking forward to the start of the expedition and meeting everyone we have been in contact with in organising this event.
Cheers everyone
Russ and Ros