Or­phans drive duo’s char­ity mis­sion

Broome Advertiser - - HAPPENINGS - Tom Zaun­mayr

Washed-out roads, b-dou­ble trucks and plenty of rub­ber­neck­ing — Dirk and Trudy Regter are a unique sight wher­ever they go in their 100-year-old clas­sic car.

The Regters are trav­el­ling through the North West of WA on the lat­est leg of their multi-year, multi-coun­try odyssey to raise money for or­phaned chil­dren’s char­ity SOS Chil­dren’s Vil­lages.

The Dutch cou­ple be­gan their jour­ney six years ago and have so far trav­elled more than 130,000km be­hind the wheel of a gen­uine 1915 Model T Ford.

“Peo­ple are al­ways ex­cited to see you, to talk with you, a lot of peo­ple are wav­ing and smil­ing,” Mr Regter said.

“When you drive this, you feel the air, the rain, the wind, the fire, and you have to do it all on your own. We started in 2012 and it has not ended now.

“We want to do Asia and visit our projects in Mon­go­lia, and we want to do the Silk Road from Mon­go­lia through China and back home.”

Mr Regter said keep­ing the car run­ning had not been a has­sle as cars in those days were built to last.

The cou­ple are far from alone — trav­el­ling along be­hind them in a Land Rover De­fender for their Aus­tralian leg are Rick Ni­co­las and David Bailie, who acted in the Pi­rates of the Caribbean films.

The duo are the lat­est to have their names in­scribed on the De­fender, which car­ries all of the Regters’ sup­plies, tools and camp­ing gear along be­hind them.

Bailie said the op­por­tu­nity to fol­low the Model T around Aus­tralia could not be missed.

“A Model T go­ing around the world — you are never go­ing to get that chance,” he said.

“It has been quite hard work — it is not some day trip where you pull off into the jun­gle or the out­back. Noth­ing else in my life will get men­tioned again, but they will look at this car and if they look far enough they will see mine and Rick’s name there.”

The group re­cently stopped in Kar­ratha, Broome, Derby and Ku­nunurra.

The Model T World Tour has raised more than $55,000 for or­phaned chil­dren to date.

Pic­ture: Tom Zaun­mayr

Rick Ni­co­las, Dirk Regter, David Bailie and Trudy Regter stopped off for a rest in Kar­ratha on their trip north.

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