In 2016, the Janapar Grant provided equipment and mentorship for one young person to set forth into the world on a rite-of-passage journey by bicycle.

The Janapar Grant

Launched in early 2016, the Janapar Grant provided equipment and mentorship for one young person to set out into the world on a bicycle.

The grant was available to UK residents between the ages of 18-25 who intended to spend a minimum of 6 months travelling abroad. Its purpose is to help young people begin a rite-of-passage journey at a time in their lives when it will benefit them most, with the fewest possible strings attached.

The successful applicant, Jess Hargreaves, received a complete package of equipment and mentorship to begin and sustain an open-ended bicycle journey. This included an expedition bicycle, luggage, camping and cooking gear, tools, and clothing, plus ongoing mentorship from a committee of veteran adventure cyclists, whose guidance is available on demand.

What's Included?

The Janapar Grant provided the successful applicant with two of the most valuable aids to making a long bicycle journey: a complete set of equipment, and mentorship from some of the most experienced cycle travellers in the UK.


*suppliers to be confirmed


  • Tom Allen – cycled in over 40 countries on 5 continents, owner of, and founder of the Janapar Grant
  • Alastair Humphreys – adventurer, author and speaker who rode 47,000 miles solo round the world
  • Emily Chappell – former cycle courier and writer who cycled solo from the UK to Japan and across Alaska in winter
  • Tim Moss – adventurer who cycled round the world 2013-2014 and founder of
  • Laura Moss – adventurer who cycled round the world 2013-2014 and founder of the UK Cycle Touring Festival
  • Leon McCarron – adventurer and expedition cameraman who cycled from New York to Hong Kong the long way round

Equipment Partners

The Janapar Grant is possible thanks to generous contributions from the following equipment brands:

Mentors & Ambassadors

Mentorship for the recipient of the Janapar Grant has been provided by the following veteran bicycle travellers:

Tom Allen
Alastair Humphreys
Emily Chappell
Tim & Laura Moss
Leon McCarron

Who Is Eligible?

To apply for the grant, you must be:

  • A permanent resident of the UK,
  • Aged between 18 and 25 at the planned outset of the journey,
  • Planning to begin travelling this year (2016),
  • Planning to travel in parts of the world with which you are not familiar,
  • Planning to travel for at least 6 months,
  • Expecting to travel alone for the majority of the journey,
  • Intending to make full use of the equipment and mentorship provided by the Janapar Grant,
  • Free of contractual or other obligations to other companies or organisations in terms of the journey you are planning.

Application Guidelines

We are looking for applicants who expect their journey to involve elements of adventure, challenge and uncertainty.

Because of this, applicants with less experience of travel or cycle touring are likely to be considered more favourably, as there is less likelihood that prior experience will detract from the challenge. In the same way, journeys that will enable the applicant to explore and be open to the world in new ways – particularly journeys taking place outside of the Western world – are likely to receive greater favour.

The aim of the grant is to promote journeys that involve immersion in unfamiliar places, cultures and ideas. Preference will not be given to journeys associated with a charity, record attempt, or other ‘cause’ which would detract from the immediate experience, nor for journeys obliged to focus on specific destinations, themes, objectives or achievements. For the same reason, preference will not be given to journeys for which a heavy element of social media or other ongoing publicity is planned. Applicants who focus on open-minded exploration for its own sake will stand the greatest chance of success.

The grant exists to provide equipment and mentorship, but excludes any financial contribution to the journey, which the applicant will be expected to raise herself or himself. Applications including a realistic budget and a strategy for raising the necessary funds will demand more consideration than those without.

Above all, we will be singling out applicants with a passion to make the most of the opportunities that independent bicycle travel can offer, and who have put appropriate thought, time and effort into demonstrating that passion creatively as part of their application.

A Message From The Founder, Tom Allen

The Janapar Grant

‘Janapar’ is the Armenian word for ‘journey’ or ‘road’, and the title of my first book and film, which tell the story of my own three-and-a-half-year adventure around the world by bicycle, which I began at the age of 23.

The journey changed my life immeasurably and in ways I could never have imagined. On returning from it, I spoke with dozens of others who’d been on similar rides as young adults, and a common theme emerged – regardless of the differences between these trips, the outcome of them all had been a new perspective on the world, a maturing of character as a result of the challenges overcome, and a heightened appreciation of what’s possible in life.

I’m well aware of the hurdles young people face when dreaming of such an adventure, though – inexperience, fear of the unknown, and a lack of resources to get to the starting line. The Janapar Grant addresses these obstacles directly. Earning the money to make your journey is the easy part – bicycle travel is one of the cheapest ways there is to see the world.

There's only one grant available each year, so be true to yourself and don't be afraid go the extra mile to make your application stand out. We're looking forward to receiving it. Good luck!

Terms Of Application

By applying for the Janapar Grant, the applicant acknowledges that, if successful, he or she will be expected to:

  • Be available for a bicycle fitting session in Oxfordshire in advance of departure;
  • Notify the grant in advance of their confirmed departure date and location;
  • Once on the road, at regular intervals but no more frequently than once per month, supply written stories of 800-1,000 words plus 1 high-resolution photograph for publication on the grant website
  • Produce a short trip report within 6 months of returning from the journey for consultation by future applicants and for publicity use by the Janapar Grant;
  • Be available for one informal video interview in the UK after the completion of their journey;
  • In the event that the journey is cancelled before departure or curtailed within 6 months, return all supplied equipment to the Janapar Grant.


Grant applications are now closed.

The deadline for applications for the 2016 grant was 5pm on Friday 15th April.


Want to hear when we're open again for applications?

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Want To Help Make The Grant More Effective?

The Janapar Grant is entirely volunteer-run. If you like what we're doing and would like to support our cause financially, click the button below to make a donation. Your contribution will be used for the purposes of publicising and administering the grant, as well as for providing items of equipment not already contributed by our partners.

Experience the journey that inspired the Janapar Grant!

Released in 2012 and quickly becoming a cult classic, Janapar tells the story of Tom Allen's own 3½-year bike trip. Having inspired countless viewers to take to the road themselves, Tom hopes to spread his belief in the power of the personal, meaningful bicycle journey with the Janapar Grant.

Watch the film