Bikers are a charitable bunch, and a new company is now capitalising on that to raise money from a range of biker wear for the Movember Foundation, which aids men’s health causes such as research into prostate cancer, testicular cancer and suicide prevention.
While most biker charities set up rideouts and events, Full Tank Moto have come up with a range of clothing available from their online store with all profits going to the charity.
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Speaking to MCN, founder Scott Wilson said the project started when he learned that a friend’s child had taken their own life. "A teenager with seemingly everything ahead was, without anyone’s knowledge, suffering from depression," he said.
"When experiencing dark times, it’s easy to think you’re alone. I know because I’ve been there. But something told me to do more. The wheels in my head started to turn."
Full Tank Moto is the result and has also helped Wilson personally, giving him a sense of purpose. "My personal struggle has been dealing with a lack of real purpose in life," he told MCN.
"It comes in different waves, and to be honest, I am not sure I’m ever through it, but it does drain the fuel from my tank. Jumping on two wheels immediately helps blow those cobwebs away."
It also explains how he came up with the name. "Full Tank is a way for riders to roll with purpose, but also a way for me to find that greater purpose and some inner peace with my demons as well."
Wilson also says that the decision to link up with Movember was an obvious one.
"Movember are the global leader in the field of men’s health. The Foundation are real change-makers who are not afraid to try new ideas, push boundaries and achieve success in different ways. For me personally, being supportive of their brand gives an opportunity to feel I’m contributing to something good."
100% profit donation
With success in other businesses meaning Wilson can afford to take nothing out of FTM, 100% of the firm’s profit goes to charity. "Being a start-up, our operational costs are very low," he says.
"My time and that of others involved is all currently donated, so we have no manpower costs. We do need to repay the seed funding, and then there is the actual cost of the products themselves to cover. But beyond that, as a registered charity, 100% of the profit can then very proudly go through to Movember."
How much Full Tank Moto raises is determined by how many products are sold, but Wilson is already confident. "I’ve a bet with Ben Bowers at Movember that after the first $100,000 is donated, his riding jacket becomes mine. So that’s my goal. But it is really in the hands of riders themselves. The more they support by purchasing Full Tank products, the more we can raise for Movember.
"The motorcycle community is hugely important to the Movember Foundation," added Ben Bowers. "Having Full Tank onboard not only provides an opportunity to continue support for Movember all year round, supporters also get to look good, doing good.
"It’s a win:win. The only loser may be me when Scott writes that first cheque for $100,000 and I have to hand over my much-loved Belstaff jacket!"
Wilson emphasises that Full Tank is for motorcycle enthusiasts from all walks of life, helping one another enjoy good physical and mental health: "Everybody deserves a ‘full tank’, and I’m thankful to the many who have volunteered their time to make that choice a possibility for bikers around the world."
Full Tank Ambassadors
When Wilson moved to New Zealand in 2016 he had the opportunity to meet racing legend, Hugh Anderson MBE.
A conversation about mental health led to the a four-time Grand Prix motorcycle road racing world champion, two-time Isle of Man TT winner and 19-time New Zealand national champion becoming the first Full Tank ambassador.
"Initiatives such as Full Tank do a great deal to lift the standing of motorcycling in the community," Anderson says. "The sense of unity provided by the ideal of giving to a well promoted – in this case neglected – health issue, unites us all, and that freedom we enjoy is exemplified in our freedom to give."
Other brand ambassadors now include: Josh Brookes, Charley Boorman, Australian stunt riding champion Lukey Luke; and the founder of the worldwide charitable initiatives, The Distinguished Gentleman’s Ride and Ride Sunday, Mark Hawwa.
Starting with a range of illustarted T-Shirts, Full Tank will expand with time to include other product lines.