This Is The Best Way to Support Responsible Kilimanjaro Trekking
Some say it takes a entire village to raise a child. We totally agree. We also agree this is true when climbing a mountain. It often takes a monumental human effort to reach a summit.
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For Mount Kilimanjaro in Northern Tanzania, this is absolutely the case—hiking to its 19,341-foot peak sometimes requires great support. Safely summiting the world's largest freestanding mountain and highest point in Africa takes a heroic effort on behalf of you and your guides, but mostly, the porters.
Porters: The True Heartbeat of Kilimanjaro
At Easy Travel we take great pride in our knowledgeable mountain guides. They all are required to have years of experience and thorough safety training. Simply put: they're the best.
In addition to these guides, the true bread-and-butter of any successful Kilimanjaro trek comes with its porters. Porters are the real muscle behind any successful Kili trek; they are the mountain's human spirit.
Each year, thousands of porters work tirelessly to shuttle gear, luggage, tents, food, and water up and down this massif. Without them, reaching the summit would be near impossible.
Porters are the ones who carry your gear, set up tents, and prepare hot water for coffee, and who help you in the case of emergencies. Porters wake up before dawn to start packing up, leapfrogging ahead so that you will have the best campsite possible. They are also the last to bed, washing dishes and fetching water. Porters are heroes, the men and women behind-the-scenes who make Kilimanjaro expeditions such a life-changing experience.
What's the Best Way to Respect Porters? KPAP.
Because we believe these porters are critical players in the success of reaching Kilimanjaro's summit, Easy Travel is one of the strongest advocates for their welfare, and we are one of only a few KPAP-certified operators in Tanzania.
KPAP stands for the Kilimanjaro Porter Assistance Project. The nonprofit was founded in 2003, in Boulder, Colorado, and their main aims are to:
- Raise public awareness regarding the proper treatment of porters on Mount Kilimanjaro,
- Assist climbing companies with procedures to ensure fair and ethical treatment of their porters,
- Lend free gear to porters and other mountain crew, and
- Offer educational classes to empower and motivate porters and mountain crew.
When you choose a KPAP-certified trekking operator, you ensure that all porters:
- Have proper equipment
- Get enough food on the mountain,
- Carry no more than 20 kilograms (44 pounds)
- Get paid on time, in amounts that meet National Park requirements
- Provided ample tent space to sleep
- Not treated badly by guides and cook
- Receive proper medical treatment if injured on the mountain
With KPAP-certified treks, there are always monitors for compliance, to ensure the KPAP standards are being practiced on the mountain. One porter, for example, will be designated to report to KPAP about the conditions. For Easy Travel, to retain our certification we must consistently score high on their rating system. Here's more about the comprehensive requirements to become a partner with KPAP.
Our Motto? Happy Porters, Happy Clients.
For us, it's simple: treat people with the dignity they deserve, and they reciprocate that back. When you choose Easy Travel for your Kilimanjaro experience, our KPAP-certification guarantees a level of respect for each porter.
For over 30 years, we've been a locally owned and operated Tanzanian business. That means our entire staff and customer support are local. These people are our family, the reason we thrive, the reason why we're awarded each year for our tours. KPAP-certified Kilimanjaro treks are a necessary safeguard among many we take to go the extra mile for our clients and staff.
KPAP Needs your Help! Act by August 9, 2018.
As a nonprofit, KPAP relies entirely on donations, grants, and gifts from people like you. Currently, they are asking for your help. KPAP is running a fundraising campaign to continue doing this exceptional work. If you support ethical standards and workers rights, and can afford to donate (even $1 would be of help!), please do. The campaign closes before midnight, August 9th
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