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The Kilimanjaro Porter Project

The Kilimanjaro Porter Project 

Since 2015, we’ve been looking to change the face of Kilimanjaro porterage by helping to educate, train and support people in the local communities surrounding Kilimanjaro to become porters and expert guides so they can make a sustainable source of income and further their future earnings.

In light of the impacts of COVID-19, we are adapting this project to best serve these communities in need. Initially, over the next couple of months, we had planned to run a “Leave No Trace” environmental care training program for 70 porters on Mt. Kilimanjaro, but given the halt in tourism and worldwide travel lockdowns, we are instead working closely with our trusted partners on the ground and redirecting our funding towards more urgently needed support while tourism is scarce.

Firstly, our partners will be disseminating health advice on COVID-19 and how to avoid it to build awareness amongst the 20,000 porters, guides and other staff who work on the mountain.

Secondly, during this unprecedented time, our funding will also enable our partners to deliver money management training, as the communities around Kilimanjaro will face a number of months ahead without any income from tourism. It’s now more crucial than ever before to be innovative with their savings and budgeting – skills which many communities in poorer countries worldwide never have the privilege to learn.

Thirdly, we are looking to work with our partners to deliver training on alternative income-generating activities, like farming while we wait for tourism to reopen. These steps are vital as they enable many families to be self-sustainable during this time and help to continue to put food on their tables.

In the meantime, the recruitment process for our first ten Mountain Lioness Scholarship awardees is continuing remotely, so that they can begin their training as soon as the college re-opens.