The Porter Assistance Project seeks to:
Provide individual porters, mountain crew, and climbing companies with a convenient and inexpensive means of equipping their crew with high quality clothing.
Offer English language, First Aid, HIV/AIDS Awareness, and Money Management classes in order to motivate and empower porters.
Educate the tourist population about acceptable standards of porter treatment.
Porter Assistance Project offices in
- Kathmandu, Nepal
- Moshi, Tanzania
- Machame, Marangu and Rongai gates of Kilimanjaro
stockpile water and wind resistant jackets and pants, quick-drying synthetic "base" layers, gloves, socks, hats, sunglasses, and footwear. The equipment, donated by manufacturers, ski schools, and individuals, is available for porters, trekkers/climbers, and tour operators to borrow to outfit their porters. All that is required is a small, refundable deposit.
Porters in Nepal and Tanzania suffer exposure, frostbite and even death as a result of not being properly clothed for the high altitudes to which they climb. In order to feed themselves and their families, they take on the job of carrying heavy loads to high elevations without warm clothes and sometimes without proper shoes. Whether you are traveling as an individual or you are running an expedition company, the Porter Assistance Project needs your help to assist Porters internationally.
Aren't Porters Adjusted to the Cold and Altitude?
The majority of porters are not like the famous Sherpas who carry loads at altitude for foreign climbing expeditions. They are impoverished sustenance farmers who travel from lower elevations to trekking and expedition routes in search of work. Like trekkers and climbers, many porters suffer from altitude sickness, hypothermia, snow blindness, and frostbite.
A porter was paid one days wage and sent down alone after suffering severe altitude sickness in the Everest region.
He was found in a state of collapse and brought to the Pheriche Aid Post, spent nine days in a coma, and had both feet partially amputated due to frostbite.
Three porters, lacking proper clothing for a late season storm, died of hypothermia related causes when a powerful storm hit Mount Kilimanjaro in September 2002. One of the porters, suffering from the cold along the Machame camping route, decided to descend the mountain on his own. His body was later found at 12,630 feet, between the Shira and Baranco camps.
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