December 11, 2013
A group of Illawarra adventurers will be doing more than taking in the gorgeous scenery when they head to Mount Everest’s base camp next March.
Their trip will raise money for the Himalayan Education Charity Foundation (HECF), an organisation that helps keep children who live near the mountains in school.
In Lukla, where the charity originated and where the trek begins, students are often pulled out of school so they can work to help their family financially. The HECF helps break the cycle of students not attending school by paying for school fees and supplies and assisting families with financial difficulties.
The trip has been organised by Brian King, an experienced Illawarra climber who has already tackled Mount McKinley in North America and Aconcagua in South America.
He will, at this stage, be joined by 11 others, most of whom have little experience with such trips. There are eight spots left on the trek.
The journey has attracted a number of Illawarra educators, with primary and secondary teachers and university lecturers making up half the group.
“They’ve related to the fact the HECF is mostly devoted to breaking the cycle of non-education in the area and trying to get the kids educated so they can return that education back into the local area,” Mr King said.
The group will stop at schools along the Everest trail as they make their way to the camp to meet the students, and are planning to donate second-hand books, laptops and other supplies to the schools. The proceeds from the trip go directly to the charity.
Mr King said the trek wasn’t overly challenging, likening the 18-day adventure to climbing the Illawarra escarpment.
For more information on the charity visit www.hecf.org.np.
Source & References
WALSH, K. 2013. Everest trip to help kids in Nepal. Illawarra Mercury, 11 December.
December 11, 2013
Exhibition displaying effects of climate change on the communities and ecosystems of the Hindu Kush Himalayan region kicks of in Kathmandu
Climate change is a much talked issue when it comes to environmental problems. You have heard about it while some of you might have experienced its impacts as well. But it is just the tip of the iceberg. It is vital to know more about it with the kind of problem it is. And this is possible and that too through an exhibition. The International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) and GlacierWorks bring you an exhibition ‘CLIMATE+CHANGE’ — an exhibition of human ingenuity and adaptation to a changing climate in the most spectacular landscape in the world.
As per a press release issued on December 10, it will open on International Mountain Day on December 11 at Nepal Art Council, Babar Mahal .
The exhibit explores the effects of climate change on the communities and ecosystems of the Hindu Kush Himalayan region. It will be a dynamic exhibition of stunning imagery, text and interactive elements that will invite visitors to “investigate the challenges faced by the natural landscapes, ecosystems, and human communities in the face of climate change across several national boundaries”.
In the display will be the science and imagery from ICIMOD along with striking photography from David Breashears and GlacierWorks that showcase the rapidly changing Himalaya and highlight solutions being implemented in the region.
The three floors of galleries will allow the visitors to experience some of the highest peaks in the world. The ground floor will focus the challenges in our urban areas related to climate change and urban sprawl. Then, the first floor will demonstrate “how cooperation across borders is addressing the risk of natural hazards and the conservation of ecosystems”. Meanwhile, you can explore the changing Himalayan landscape in and around Mt Everest, and scientific explanations through the breathtaking, large-scale photography from GlacierWorks.
Meanwhile, in-depth educational materials and teacher resources will be made available to the students and teachers so that they can take lessons from the exhibition back to the classroom, add the press release. Interestingly, each month, new programmess and events will engage visitors on various topical issues that revolve around the exhibition.
“It will help the visitors understand better, the complexities of glaciers on the rooftop of the world” adds the press statement. Also, there will be a photo story to explore the diverse perspectives of people living in this extraordinary region.
The contents of the exhibition will be taken to the remote areas of Nepal through the first ever Book Bus of Nepal. And there are more.
The exhibition will continue till April 13, 2014.
source: Himalayan Times, 10 DEC 2013
December 11, 2013
The government of Norway has agreed to provide $25 million to support the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (Icimod), an INGO, in sustainable mountain development for improved livelihood.
An agreement was signed between Kjell Tormod Pettersen, the ambassador of Norway to Nepal and David Molden, Icimod director general. The organisation said in a statement on Tuesday that the support will focus on local institutions, gender analysis, and approaches for sustainable development in mountains and downstream. Other areas of focus include water availability and demand, food security, and adaptation to climate change.
The programme is expected to increase the knowledge of how air pollution and black carbon affect human health and agricultural production.
source: The Kathmandu Post, 11 DEC 2013
December 11, 2013
The 4th Global Bird Watchers’ Conference, the annual event of Gujarat tourism department in coordination with forest department will be held for three days, from January 31.
Gujarat tourism department in association with various organization began this event in 2009-10 to put water bodies in the state on the international map and attract tourists. It has become a regular event.
Officials said Gujarat is emerging as an eco-tourism destination, being host to wide range of pristine and hitherto unexplored destinations for nature lovers. The conference will not only showcase the destinations of Gujarat, but discussions will also be held on how to preserve these winged visitors who are facing many threats.
The objectives of the fourth conference were to promote Gujarat as a birding destination and project it as a eco-tourism destination, the officials said.
The conference aims to provide a platform for discussion by international experts on birds, birding and bird watching to promote tourism and conservation.
Also, the conference will discuss the migratory route of birds from Europe and West Asia to the coasts, wetlands and islands in Gujarat. The focus is likely to be Nalsarovar and nearby areas as the water body was recently declared a Ramsar site, officials said.
source: The Times of India, 10 DEC 2013
December 10, 2013
A four-day refresher training for trekking guides kicked off at Trekking Agencies’ Association of Nepal (TAAN) Secretariat on December 10.
Twenty-six trekking guides from different member agencies of TAAN are participating in the training organized jointly by TAAN and High Impact Tourism Training (HITT) under SNV Nepal.
TAAN President Ramesh Dhamala inaugurated the training amid a function. Speaking on the occasion, Dhamala said TAAN has been organizing number of trainings to enhance professionalism of trekking workers. “I am hopeful that the training will be important to keep your clients safe and happy,” added Dhamala. He also requested the participants to implement in practice what they have learnt in the training.
Dhan Prasad Gurung, coordinator of TAAN’s Training and HR Department, said the training is part of TAAN’s effort to prepare trained human resources for the trekking sector. “We will keep on designing and organizing trainings based on the need of our member agencies,” Gurung said, requesting the participants to share knowledge they have gained from the training to other trekking workers.
Tanguy Cariou, international associate advisor of HITT under SNV Netherlands, said the training will be important for trekking guides. “SNV Nepal has been investing a lot in trainings for the trekking sector in partnership with TAAN,” Cariou said, requesting the participants to implement what they have learnt in the training while taking clients on trekking.
Chandra Niroula, Chandra GT, Sunil Gurung, Jayanath Bhandari, Govinda Shrestha, Machhindra Acharya and Gelbu Tshering Sherpa are the facilitators of the training. The facilitators are the graduates of the training of trainers (TOT) organized jointly by TAAN and HITT/SNV Nepal.
source: TAAN, 09 DEC 2013
December 10, 2013
As many as 8,282 foreign tourists visited the Sagarmatha National Park in Khumbu region from Mid-October to Mid-November, the Park office stated. Out of 8,282 visitors, 5 thousand 158 are women and 3,100 men.
Most of the visitors are from the United Kingdom. One thousand one hundred and twenty British, 889 German, 802 U.S. and 122 from SAARC countries visited the national park in that month, it is learnt.
Each foreign tourist has to pay Rs. 3,000 entrance fee to visit the site. The National Park Office has collected Rs. 21,734,800 as revenue under different fees from the visitors in this month.
Likewise, 7,799 tourists had visited the park in the same period last year and 9,105 tourists have visited the site in the same month the year before that, office source said.
source: The Rising Nepal, 06 DEC 2013
December 10, 2013
As it does with each new installment, the Kathmandu International Mountain Film Festival (KIMFF) is back once again packed with special screenings for the benefit of the Capital’s film -enthusiasts. Organised by the Himal Association, KIMFF has long been showcasing film s related to mountains, the people therein and their culture and environment, as well as offering opportunities for interaction and discussion amidst film makers from Nepal and around the world. The final line-up for KIMFF 2013—which will be held between December 11-15 at the Rastriya Sabha Griha—was officially revealed at a press meet held at 1905 restaurant in Kantipath on Monday.
“We’ve had a lot of submissions this year from young Nepali film makers, which is great,” KIMFF Chair Basanta Thapa said at the event. “The year-on-year progress in terms of quantity and content has been very encouraging to see.”
This year’s festival will open with the world premiere of the film Indreni Khojdai Jada by Sahara Sharma, an independent feature film which revolves around the lives of three siblings who have come to Kathmandu to seek better opportunities. Sharma is among quite a few young Nepali directors whose works will be part of KIMFF 2013.
Altogether, there are 47 film s—including documentaries, fiction, shorts, animated and experimental productions that encompass a wide range of subjects—from 20 countries that forms part of the International Competition and Nepal Panorama categories. Also to be shown are selected film s from the short film competition entitled ‘Why Poverty’ featuring Nepali film makers. Organised in partnership with Steps International, the top three winners of ‘Why Poverty’ will be announced, the prize for which will comprise a mentorship workshop with established international film makers, to be conducted by the Sattya Media Arts Collective.
Also to be announced are the top three film s in the International Competition, as well as the Best Documentary, Best Fiction Film, and the Best Film on Mountain Development in the Nepal Panorama sections, with awardees set to receive various cash prizes. All film s at KIMFF are also eligible for the Audience Award, based on the votes of viewers.
Aside from screenings, KIMFF 2013 will also comprise other events, like the ‘We Are All Connected’, a short film competition for environmental productions; an audiovisual presentation on ‘The Great Himalayan Trail’ by German travel writer Gerda Pauler alongside the launch of her book; a panel discussion on the ‘Challenges of Helicopter Rescue in the Himalaya’; an illustrated talk by railways enthusiast John Waldron on ‘The Secrets of Railways in the Foothills of Nepal’; and a discussion on ‘Journalistic Challenges in Promoting Mountain Tourism and Development’ by Stephen Goodwin, editor of the Alpine Journal. Several exhibitions will also form part of the festival.
source: ekantipur, 10 DEC 2013
December 10, 2013
Goma Air is operating a new Let L410 UVP-E20 turboprop aircraft from February.
Issuing a statement, the airline said the 19-seater aircraft made in Czech Republic is a commuter type multi-engine turbo propeller aircraft. “This is the first time in four decades that a brand new aircraft is being brought in by a Nepali company to be operated in Short Take-Off and Landing (STOL) airfields,” the statement added.
Manoj Karki, managing director of Goma Air, said that the company will operate two aircraft manufactured by LET Aircraft Industries. The first aircraft will fly from Kathmandu to different destinations in eastern Nepal from mid-February, according to Karki. “The second aircraft, which will joint the fleet after six months, will fly to destinations in western region from its base in Pokhara,” said Karki.
According to Karki, the aircraft is fitted with all state of the art equipment and navigational aids which will ensure safe air travel.
Rabi Chandra Singh, director of VR Holdings — the authorized representative for LET Aircraft Industries in Nepal, said that company is happy to bring aircraft that is suitable for Nepali sky. “We will make sure that necessary steps are taken to start Maintenance and Repair Organization (MRO) in Nepal to provide service in the South Asian region and to supply spare parts,” he added.
This aircraft has received type certification by European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA).
At present, more than 350 L410 UVP-E20 aircraft are flying in more than 50 countries around the world.
“This is our first aircraft in Nepali airspace. We are excited to be here and assure that the aircraft meet all the standards of International Safety Agency and Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN),” Miroslav Kozisek, commercial director LET Aircraft Industries, said. “The successful test landing at Jomsom Airport has confirmed that our aircraft is the best STOL aircraft available in the world at present.”
Milan Slapak, commercial director of GE Aviation, which makes engines for the L410 UVP-E20, said the H80 engine in the aircraft is safe and reliable. “It is designed to work in Nepali conditions very well,” he said in the statement.
Goma Air is currently operating cargo flights in mid and far western region with two Cessna caravan aircrafts.
source: republica, 08 DEC 2013