Welcome to NEC’s first ever Virtual Balloon Race where you have the chance to win an amazing £500!

As we’re virtual, it’s totally environmentally friendly with no risk to wildlife!

Each balloon costs just £3 and you can buy as many for yourself, or as gifts, as you want to increase your chances of winning.
Setting off from the Santa’s village in Lapland at midday on 25 December, the race is a 7 day, computer simulation where everything is real except the balloon. The direction and distance the balloons fly is based completely on the way you customise your balloon (shape, colour, pattern, amount of helium), and the weather conditions during the week. Other hazards can also affect your balloons flight such as low flying geese or if your balloon doesn't have enough helium! All balloons can be tracked from launch, and the winner is the balloon that’s flown the furthest in ANY direction.

Nkuringo Education and Community Support is a UK based charity supporting the community of Nkuringo in South East Uganda. Our aims are;
>the prevention, or relief, of poverty by providing grants, aid and services to individuals and groups.
>to advance the education of pupils attending the primary and secondary schools in Nkuringo through the provision of facilities and student sponsorship to those who otherwise would be unable to afford to attend.
>the relief of sickness and promotion of health through advice and the provision of healthcare.

Every six months for the past three years, we have taken a party of 24 sponsors out to visit the community, but all this has been put on hold due to the Covid pandemic. We take over a ton of aid and money to improve the physical infrastructure including water tanks for the village, building classrooms and dorms and solar panels. Thanks to sponsors across the world, we have over 350 children in full time education, many boarding due to the distance from home, and all receiving food.

After a winter of destructive landslides, destroying families and livelihoods, this year has been further devastating for the community of Nkuringo as they were hit by the sudden and total removal of tourism and so their employment. Trekking guides, basket weavers, lodge staff, all were suddenly without income and they struggle to feed their families.

NECS sent emergency donations to fill hungry tummies and tools and seeds to ensure a good harvest and this has helped to rebuild lives. Pop up classes throughout the summer have kept children’s education ticking over, and school has officially restarted, with masks and sanitiser. Like the UK, they are not back to normal but are finding their feet.

There is still little employment and families are desperate to find ways to feed children who would normally be at school, receiving a lunch or boarding through termtime. This has put a huge strain on resources and, sadly, 5 of the secondary school girls have been married off in exchange for a dowry to help family coffers. We’re deeply saddened by the loss of their opportunity of an education and are resolved to working locally to identify other girls at risk and support through education and the provision of more food to struggling groups.

This fund raiser will help the people of Nkuringo to keep their heads above water until such times as they are able to rebuild their jobs and economy. We want to deliver emergency food where there is real hardship, and the tools to grow their own crops. To provide, or rebuild shelters, mend and facilitate water collection to take advantage of the wet season, support the education of those children in school, and encourage others back, where safe.

If all our FaceBook supporters (343), brought just one balloon, we would raise over £800 (after commission)! And someone would be £500 better off! What would you use that money for?!

Our fundraising target is: £1000

Gross monies raised so far: £744

Supporters so far: 70

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View race results

Top 20 balloons within cause

  • #1 Cruising: travelled 451.83km FINISHED

  • #2 Lady T: travelled 439.32km FINISHED

  • #3 max varvills balloon: travelled 359.69km FINISHED

  • #4 Mel: travelled 357.19km FINISHED

  • #5 For Aphia: travelled 345.75km FINISHED

  • #6 ROCKET ROB: travelled 320.63km FINISHED

  • #7 Marni: travelled 316.06km FINISHED

  • #8 Russ Air: travelled 310.43km FINISHED

  • #9 Paul: travelled 310.23km FINISHED

  • #10 Moon Spoon Balloon : travelled 309.70km FINISHED

  • #11 Anna: travelled 308.64km FINISHED

  • #12 Charlie: travelled 308.56km FINISHED

  • #13 BILL: travelled 307.92km FINISHED

  • #14 Thomas: travelled 306.97km FINISHED

  • #15 SPEEDY MEM: travelled 306.51km FINISHED

  • #16 SCD: travelled 304.81km FINISHED

  • #17 Balloon: travelled 301.79km FINISHED

  • #18 Fly high Joe: travelled 293.81km FINISHED

  • #19 Balloon: travelled 292.82km FINISHED

  • #20 Balloon: travelled 292.25km FINISHED

Supporter Balloons (248)

  • Tarot Netty joined the race on December 25, 2020, 9:24 AM

  • Wincluison lady S joined the race on December 25, 2020, 9:19 AM

  • CLODAGH joined the race on December 25, 2020, 9:06 AM

  • CAOIMHE joined the race on December 25, 2020, 9:02 AM

  • EUAN joined the race on December 25, 2020, 8:59 AM

  • Santas good luck charm joined the race on December 25, 2020, 8:47 AM

  • Cozza joined the race on December 24, 2020, 11:13 PM

  • Nathan joined the race on December 24, 2020, 11:13 PM

  • shushan joined the race on December 24, 2020, 11:08 PM

  • Devin joined the race on December 24, 2020, 10:59 PM