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A Journey of Empowerment: Together We Rise!

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UPDATE:
In March 2024, we hand delivered 7 bags of hiking equipment for the Porters and Guides and supplies for the orphanage.

And we want to help even further:

Ana is the wife of January, one of our Guides on the climb. She is hoping to open a local store to supply her neighbors with food and other essentials.. She has secured a storefront and needs capital for a starting inventory and shelving displays.

Sara Israel, one of the Porters wives, would like to employ female seamstresses and get a place to set up her tailoring business. She is going to teach 4 women in her neighborhood for free, to pay it forward.

Sada needs another semester at English school before starting her Mountain Guide School in November.

January would like to open a rental business to supply equipment to tour operators that climb Mount Kilimanjaro and needs funds to purchase crew tents, mess tents, client tents, kit bags, duffel bags, oxygen cylinders and other essentials that make climbing the mountain possible.

Christian, one of the 4 Guides on our trip would like to plant eucalyptus trees on 4 hectares of land on his family’s property with a view to cultivating the trees in a few years time. He needs help to buy seeds and employ local people to plant them. So by doing so, he’s helping others in his local neighborhood.

The orphanage that we visited are always looking for food, school supplies and toiletries and even mattresses for the children to sleep on.

We are committed to leaving this world better than we found it and watching the ripple effect of how a small amount can change the lives of money.

BACK STORY:
In August 2023, 9 strangers embarked on an unforgettable journey to Tanzania to conquer Mount Kilimanjaro, not just for ourselves, but for a greater purpose. Our expedition was more than a climb; it was to raise critical funds for the Michael J Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research. Alongside us were 33 remarkable porters and guides, unsung heroes who dedicated themselves to ensuring our adventure was remarkable, safe, and successful. Their unyielding commitment made our ascent of the world's tallest freestanding mountain possible.

Behind their smiles and boundless dedication lies a reality often unnoticed. These porters rely on the goodwill of their clients, often receiving inadequate compensation for their invaluable efforts. They aspire to build brighter futures for themselves and their families, and one path towards this goal is becoming a Mount Kilimanjaro Guide. Training sessions are held biannually in March and November.

We've connected with the stories of four of the porters who accompanied us on our journey. Two of them would like to join the November training course, an opportunity that could open doors to new possibilities for them. One would like to learn English before embarking on the guide training class. Additionally, one of the porter's wives, a talented tailor, dreams of establishing her own business. To empower her dreams, she needs just two sewing machines and some supplies.

As we reflect on the kindness and support bestowed upon us during our Kilimanjaro expedition, we're moved to reciprocate by uplifting those who made our climb possible. With your generous contributions, we aim to create a ripple effect of positive change in the lives of these porters, guides, and their families - your donations will transform their lives. “If you give a man a fish, you feed him for a day. If you teach a man to fish, you feed him for a lifetime.”

Meet Emanuel (32). A father of two, he bears the weight of not just his own family, but also his younger brother's and sister's since their parents passed away. Emanuel, a porter by profession, shoulders the physical demands of carrying clients' belongings up the mountain. Beyond this role, he's also a cheerful waiter, starting each day with a smile as he serves piping hot coffee or tea to his clients at their tents. Known for his kindness and unwavering positivity, Emanuel embodies the spirit of a potentially exceptional mountain guide.


Meet Vailet, a resilient 21-year-old Maasai porter who defies both age and gender stereotypes to work tirelessly. She stands out as the fifth child among ten siblings in her family. Despite societal challenges, Vailet's determination remains unshaken. After completing her secondary education, she yearned for higher studies, but her parents insisted on an early marriage. Rejecting this path, Vailet ventured into a new life far from her parents, driven by her future aspirations.

With no job prospects at the time, she turned to mountain climbing to make ends meet and possibly fund her education dream. This opportunity resonates deeply with her, and she truly deserves it. With your assistance, she can grasp the gift of education and gain knowledge that will transform her life.

Vailet's story speaks of resilience, courage, and the pursuit of dreams against all odds. Your support has the power to catalyze her life's trajectory, granting her the chance to attain education and acquire invaluable skills for a brighter future. Together, let's empower Vailet's journey and provide her with the lifelong gift of knowledge!


Meet Sada, she has been a porter for two years. She got married 2017 and had a baby girl, however, when the pandemic hit, life took an unexpected turn, leading to her divorce. Faced with the responsibility of providing for herself and her daughter, Sada made the courageous choice to become a porter to ensure they could make ends meet.

It was hard at first and there were challenges, but Sada refused to surrender. Her determination and resilience shone through as she pressed on, driven by her unwavering commitment to her daughter's well-being and her own future.

Sada would like to return to school and pursue her ambition of becoming a mountain guide. Her first step towards this goal is to dedicate nine months to learning English. By acquiring this language skill, she aims to equip herself with the tools necessary to provide the ultimate experience for her future customers when she eventually fulfills her dream of becoming a mountain guide.


Meet Saimon Simiin Kisiki, a dedicated 36-year-old porter who pours his effort into a physically demanding role – hauling clients' equipment up the mountain. As the main breadwinner, he shoulders the responsibility of providing for his wife and four children.

With the earnings from his porter job, he managed to fund his wife's college education, where she honed her skills in clothing design. Supporting her tuition for two and a half years led to her graduation. Though she volunteers at the college due to limited resources for her own business, her dreams of independence and self-employment shine bright.

She seeks two sewing machines, an overlocking machine, and financial assistance for materials. With your support, she envisions a transformed life not only for herself but for her entire family. Your generosity can amplify the impact of this opportunity, providing them with the tools to forge a self-sufficient future.

Saimon and his wife's determination are a tale of empowerment and hard work. Your support could trigger a significant change, benefiting not only their lives, but also the generations they care for.



Basic hiking and camping gear are essential for the Porters and Guides in Tanzania. Typically, they rely on items left behind by individuals who no longer need them after their Mount Kilimanjaro expedition. However, their access to these resources depends on the generosity of these individuals, and not everyone can leave their gear behind. Some may have rented or borrowed equipment for their journey.

To assist them, we are in the process of creating an Amazon wishlist featuring some of these essential items. We are also actively working on logistics to ensure the gear reaches them in Tanzania, facilitating their work and making their lives a bit easier.

Thanks so much for reading this far and we really appreciate your support.

Kili9
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Donations 

  • Philip Manning
    • $50 
    • 2 mos
  • James Gershon
    • $50 
    • 4 mos
  • Anonymous
    • $500 
    • 5 mos
  • John Gilmore
    • $50 
    • 5 mos
  • Stephanie Maslow Blackman
    • $100 
    • 5 mos
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Organizer

Joanne Simmons
Organizer
Jersey City, NJ

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