Nepal – Himalayan Kids

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The Challenge:

A three week trip to trek in the spectacular Himalayas of Nepal. Experience what life is really like high up in the Annapurna range of this beautiful mountain kingdom.

Spend part of your trip making a difference in the lives of Nepalese school children through hands-on-participation with the Himalayan Kids project – a project which provides the best environment for proper care and development for orphaned, abandoned and at-risk children in the Pokhara area of Nepal. Hope for Himalayan Kids is a registered, not for profit, child welfare organization in Nepal. To date they have helped vulnerable Nepalese children by improving children’s home standards, reintegrating children with family, providing safe alternative care for children in institutions and assisting children at-risk stay with family. They have also signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Government of Nepal, which will see their learnings and best practices applied to hundreds of homes in the medium term, potentially impacting the lives of thousands of children.

With your new-found perspective on some of the challenges of life in Nepal, you will continue your journey of discovery by trekking to Annapurna I South-Face Base Camp at 13,550ft/4,130m in the 360 degree panoramic mountain amphitheatre known as “The Sanctuary”. This tough trek does not involve any technical climbing.

Trip proceeds will support the wonderful humanitarian work of Hope for Himalayan Kids, and impact the lives of hundreds of children and their future. Please see for more information on the project.


  1. To enhance the leadership qualities of North Americans, arming them with an enormous sense of accomplishment that they will cherish for the rest of their lives.
  2. To raise funds to improve the living conditions and turn incredibly unhealthy environments into well-run, safe, child-friendly and supportive environments for many Nepalese children, and get them out of the circle of poverty over the long run.
  3. To allow participants to better understand various development issues, including preventing child abandonment and the subsequent placement of children into children’s homes.
  4. To empower participants with a world view that they can take into account when considering their career choices.


  1. Improved physical fitness through pre-trip preparation.
  2. The opportunity to make new friends and network.
  3. An appreciation for the incredible natural beauty of Nepal and the diverse culture and history of its proud people.
  4. The opportunity to make a meaningful difference in the lives and futures of many orphaned and abandoned children.
  5. The opportunity to experience the local people and culture in an authentic manner.
  6. Being an inspiration to others: family members, friends and local community.
  7. A far better appreciation of the development challenges in the world, and how participants can find their own ways to help communities solve some of these issues.
  8. Opportunity to fulfill Duke of Edinburgh Gold Level residential and expedition requirements.
  9. Contribute to the local economy wherever possible by working with local suppliers.
  10. Select one environmental project in the host country to which 5% of funds will be channeled.

NOTE: Schools that are part of Round Square will notice the similarities in the overall philosophy and service components. But the physical training, tough trekking and fund-raising challenges differentiate the Climb for Leaders program from the highly regarded Round Square projects.

Trip supervision:

Besides two staff/faculty escorting the small group as responsible seconds for the whole trip, the trek will also include a local Head Sherpa Guide plus local, experienced Sherpa trek leaders who speak English. Local porters will also support the group on the mountain.

During the service project, the founding members of HFHK, Nicki Holt-Manandhar and Aruna Khadka will be available as mentors to the group.


  1. Students must be in the final two years of high school. Exceptions may be made for Grade 10 students on a case by case basis. Students must be 16 years or older at the time of the trip.
  2. Participants must be in good overall health.
  3. Participants must complete application forms and travel waivers per deadlines.
  4. Students are required to submit a 1,000-word essay entitled “What are the top three development challenges facing the Nepalese, and how would I solve them?”
  5. Participants must be willing to participate in learning sessions before the climb, and to share climb and travel experiences after the climb.
  6. Participants must meet the minimum fund-raising requirement each, except for faculty/staff who are participating as “responsible seconds”.
  7. Participants must pay for all costs by the deadlines outlined.

Detailed program:

To obtain a detailed program including detailed itinerary and costs, please contact us.

To apply:

Complete the online form at Space is limited and will be available on a first come first serve basis, so long as each applicant meets the application requirements above.