The highly-anticipated event on the late Summer calendar – the Vintage Rally of Child CARE Monaco – always feels like the opening of the social season. There will never be enough time to go to all the events after this and there has never been a slower time just before.

The excitement was palpable to the participants and onlookers at Casino Square where, on Sunday September 10 the 10th Vintage Rally started in the big style of ‘Les années folles‘ The Twenties.  The theme Charleston paid tribute to the year of birth of Prince Rainier III and the vintage cars matched beautifully the attires of lady and gentleman participants. Yes, this year gentlemen were invited too. 

Ninety-nine participants in 39 cars – some of them came from the collection of HSH Prince Albert, some of them were peoples’ own – like the Mercedes Benz 1929 or Jaguar 1936 – made for the biggest feast for eyes and the most successful fundraising event so far.

“Being passionate about vintage cars, the idea of the rally naturally came to my mind as I was searching for a unique charitable event to raise funds for the humanitarian missions supported by Child CARE Monaco,” said Martine Ackermann, the founder and president of the association. ” Such events were not common 10 years ago and it took patience, courage, and determination for me to embark on this adventure with a good team following me.”

As every year the organisers kept the details of the program strictly secret until the Day itself. During the day, driving vintage cars around the Riviera, the ladies and gentlemen stopped for a delicious gastronomic lunch at  “Le Mas des Geraniums”, an old Provencal farmhouse, typical of the middle-country of the Cote d’Azur frequented in their time by Francois Mitterand and Jacques Chirac, who loved the countryside here in Oppio. Lunch was followed by Speakeasy entertainment and afternoon coffee.

The tombola, quiz, and afternoon tea was taken at Eze Village in the Restaurant L’Antre Potes and finally the Grand Arrival for champagne cocktails and the Awards Ceremony, attended by HSH Princess Stephanie, at the end of the day were celebrated at the Restaurant Castelroc in Monaco Ville. 

Every team deserved a trophy but the biggest take for everyone was that by having fun you can also support the lives of the much less-privileged, girls living in the poorest parts of the world. 

“The first school in India was founded in 2013 in Rajasthan and hosted 60 girls. Thanks to our sponsorship program – 159 euros per year – the girls are given clothes, medical care, two meals a day, and Hindi and English classes according to their culture. The managing costs of our association are close to zero so all the money coming from the sponsors goes directly to the children.” 

Many more children are now part of the school, and another one in the south of Calcutta built in 2020. The latest addition is a new school for orphans soon to be opened in South Africa, and there are many other projects that Child CARE Monaco has developed since 2013 thanks to fundraising like the annual Vintage Rally and individual donations.

“We had six cars and 18 people participating this year,” said Magali Jacquet-Lagreze from CFM Indosuez in Monaco. “This is so well organised and what is important is that while we are having fun we are also helping the children. My highlight from this year’s rally is meeting new people – in multicultural Monaco this is a great place and atmosphere to be sharing one goal with people from around the globe. And I also loved that everybody was dressed for the occasion!”

PHOTOS: Martina and Jack Brodie

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