Kili Guide Scholarships
Traveling to Africa to climb Mt Meru or Mt. Kilimanjaro can be a life changing experience for many reasons. It is challenging and beautiful, and an introduction to the African way of life. Anyone who has successfully reached the summit knows that a key ingredient is the leadership and encouragement of the African guides.
Peggy MacKellar, a recent climber in August of 2011, had just such a life changing experience. One of the assistant guides, Mohammed, took her under his wing to make sure she made it through the challenges of the climb to summit. She had difficulty with the trail conditions and altitude on Mt. Meru, finding it hard to even catch a breath above 14,000 feet. Mohammed took her pack and walked slower with her, softly encouraging each time she felt she couldn't even stand up and take another step.
The next week on the Kili climb, Peggy acclimatized and was breathing well but experienced other effects of altitude and again needed Mohammed to carry her pack and walk with her more slowly than the group. The experience of that relationship between guide and climber inspired Peggy to set up a scholarship fund for Mohammed and his son, Hemed. The scholarship will enable Mohammed to go to English school in preparation for becoming a full guide and Hemed, the son, to attend school 5 years. Getting a secondary education in Tanzania is essential preparation for building a better life. This education also needs to be in English which requires paying for a private school, uniforms, books, supplies and transportation.