You are about to discover a new culture, accomplish something unforgettable, and explore what Nepal has to offer!
The GVN Everest Base camp trek is a trek with a difference - you'll not only have the opportunity to hike the highest mountain in the world, but you'll be doing it for a purpose. You'll be involved in fundraising to support the 14 children at Brighter Future Children's Home and you'll get to meet these amazing kids once you've completed the trek.
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My trip to Everest Base Camp was a defining moment in my life and, for a moment, it gave me faith that I was not one to let life slip quietly from my hands. If you are like me and want to truly understand your world and your place in it, I hope that you will allow GVN to get you up off the couch and explore life. Best wishes on your journey.
Chris | Everest Trekker
Major strength was support got from GVN before I left for trek...Another strength was GVN's partner, they were so passionate about the homes and kids, and it was great to talk to them and listen to their experiences in Nepal...I could not believe how I felt after these projects and after getting the presentation from GVN's partner and seeing the photos of the kids I met, it just makes it feel so real, and makes me want to do more to help out.
Orla | Everest Trekker
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As a participant in the Everest trek, you will go from the hustle and bustle of Kathmandu, a cosmopolitan city very much in the 21st century, but still with pockets dating back to ancient times, into the supreme majesty of Nepal’s high Himalayas. The pathways you will tread will not only take you to the foot of the world’s highest mountain through jaw-dropping scenery, but will envelop you in the spirit of Nepal and its people. As you pass through villages following traditional trade routes you will be given an insight into life in rural Nepal and marvel at the adaptability, resilience and tenacity of Nepal’s Sherpa people.
Our vision is to connect people with communities in need, with a particular focus on vulnerable women and children. We do this by supporting the work of local community organizations in countries through the placement of international volunteers.
We are excited to get your placement under way where you will:
Be a part of GVN's efforts to inspire learning, innovation and action to unlock the potential of vulnerable communities around the world. Work with exceptional grassroots projects in community development, conservation and wildlife, personal development, fundraising and physical challenges.
Have the 24/7 support of a non profit with 12 years experience in placing 19549 volunteers that will provide you with an affordable and rewarding placement.
Volunteer with a world-class organization which is recommended by Bill Gates and CNN.
Be a part of progressive non profit that has raised over $2 million to help women and children in need.
Have the comfort of knowing that GVN staff have collectively flown over 1 million miles to ensure you get a quality placement.
Make a long-term impact in your community of choice - it's not just a vacation.
How GVN works...
The first step is to fill out an application to see if we have a place for you. Then if your application is successful you will be accepted and we will then get to work organizing your placement.
GVN is a registered Charitable Trust, so volunteers finance themselves, or can fundraise online with our unique GVN platform, with US donors receiving tax receipts. The Program Package provides you with all that is listed below, along with personalized support from our expert staff and the knowledge that you'll be working with a reputable and registered charity with over 12 years experience in the field.
At the heart of our work is the communities our volunteers work to support - we ensure that these communities truly benefit from your time in Everest and that the Program Package fully supports you financially while you're volunteering.
The Program Package also includes a project donation, which supports the work the GVN Foundation does in addressing nutrition, education and healthcare needs, as well as supporting longer-term development approaches, including income generation activities and microfinance.
Your program package includes:
Personal support from your Program Specialist throughout the preparation process.
Your Program Guide, with all the details on Everest and your placement.
Fundraising strategies and access to our crowd funding platform where you can raise up to 100% of the cost your trip, with tax receipts for your US based donors.
Access to Your Own Online Journal: which helps you to communicate effectively and easily with your family and friends back home.
Opportunities for Preferred Pricing and Personalized Service when booking Airfares: through our travel partner GYT Flight Centre who go the extra mile to support GVN volunteers.
Accommodation: All participants will stay in hotel/lodges for the duration of the trip.
Meals: All meals on the trek. Some meals before and after the trek.
Airport pickup: On arrival and departure date.
Transportation: Flights to/from Lukla and project visits.
Training/Permits: In-country briefing and Sagarmartha National Park Entry Permit.
Supervision: In-country staff supervision and expert trip leadership.
Support: Pre-departure personal support from your trek coordinator, 24/7 in-country support from partner, necessary porters, rescue assistance, group medical kit, and 24hr emergency line. Also necessary equipment such as sleeping bag and down jacket.
An opportunity to debrief and provide feedback
Free access to GVN Changemakers program which alerts you to future internship/job opportunities at GVN.
A Letter of Completion in Volunteer Service.
The opportunity to stay connected with your project.
Global advocacy and fundraising campaigns to continue your part of the movement for social change with an international non-profit that has granted over $2 million to our partner organizations.
The program package does not include: International flights, insurance, visas, vaccinations, accommodation before or after the trek, medication and medical equipment if required, gratuities, beverages, laundry, hot showers, snacks, sightseeing in Kathmandu, charges incurred as a result of delays beyond the control of the trekking company or GVN.
We recommend you allow a minimum weekly budget of US $75 for your other expenses such as water, personal items, beverages, and snacks.
Program Fee – 18 days US $2,997
Due to the timing of this trek, GVN requires the trek fee payment in full by 29th May 2014.
Nepali Children's Fund Fee - US $2,000
In the months preceding your trek, you will be asked to raise US $2,000 to support our partner organization. 75% of the money donated will go directly to our Nepal Partner. This money will go towards funding the day to day operations of the Brighter Future Children's Home. 15% will go towards general operational support, 5% will be dedicated towards ensuring that all money sent to community organizations abroad is being used appropriately, and 5% will go towards educating individuals both here and abroad about the specific issues our target communities face (specifically HIV/AIDS, Environmental Destruction, Starvation etc). Please note that WorldPay takes a 4.5% commission for credit card purchases before GVN receives the funds. Donations made to GVN by American donors are tax-deductible. Non-US donors cannot receive a tax-exemption.
Please note: GVN/GVNF/GVN Nepal reserve the right to determine the dissemination of funds.
Can you tell me more about Nepal?
For many of us Nepal conjures up images of snow-capped mountains. Indeed, eight of the world’s 14 eight-thousands lie in Nepal, making it a mountaineer’s dream. Bordered by the magnificent Himalayas, Nepal is a land of spectacular scenery, time-worn temples, and some of the best walking trails on earth. The country is sandwiched between India to the south and Tibet to the north. Until recently it was the only Hindu Kingdom in the world, Nepal has now moved into a new era of democracy and a secular society. But Nepal has more to offer than just the high Himalayas. Small as the country may be, the land is diverse geographically as well as ethnically. You will find rich cultures and vibrant traditions, exquisite temples and monuments as well as fast flowing rivers and tropical jungles teeming with wildlife, making your trip an unforgettable one. It is a country where people of different races and religions live in relative harmony. For more information we suggest you purchase the Lonely Planet’s guide to Nepal.
What is the climate like in Nepal?
Nepal’s climate is typically monsoonal with a wet and dry season. The dry season runs from October through to May with the monsoon season lasting the rest of the year. May and the start of June is the hottest time of the year and the temperature in Kathmandu often reaches as high as 30C. During the winter temperatures can still be as high as 20C but beware of near freezing conditions once night falls. Even though Nepal is well known for the snow capped Himalayan mountain range it rarely actually snows in the Kathmandu Valley. Having said this, during February 2007 snow fell in the Valley for the first time in 62 years! You should be aware that if you are trekking at altitude you may experience very cold temperatures even during the summer months. We suggest you conduct thorough research into temperatures at altitude and the risks involved with trekking at altitude. For climate statistics, please refer to the following link: http://www.worldclimate.com.
Can you tell me more about the political situation in Nepal?
The political situation in Nepal is a topic of frequent conversation. On 21 April 2006, following weeks of nationwide violent street demonstrations by the political parties and the Maoists, the King handed over power to the political parties. The Parliament convened on 28 August 2006 and a new Prime Minister, G P Koirala was sworn in to office on 30 April 2006. The 18th of May 2006 was the historic day when the House of Representatives declared the people as sovereign and the sole source of state authority forever. History has been changed. Nepal is no longer a Hindu Kingdom but a secular state, with the fate of the monarchy in the hands of the people. The Cabinet appointed the army chief and the Royal Nepalese Army is now the Nepal Army. The Government of Nepal and the Maoists signed a peace agreement on 21 November 2006, thereby officially ending 11 years of conflict in the country. Both sides have agreed to a UN monitored permanent ceasefire. The situation in Kathmandu and elsewhere in Nepal has improved. However, it is too early to say how the peace agreement will affect the security situation in the country. Mostly peaceful demonstrations continue to occur, but you should be aware that some demonstrations have suddenly turned violent. You are therefore strongly advised to avoid all demonstrations and large gatherings and remain vigilant at all times. We recommend that you research the situation further. Up to date information is available at Nepalnews.com
Why go with Global Volunteer Network? Why not a Commercial Trip?
Our trip to The Base Camp of Mount Everest offers many unique opportunities that commercialized treks do not offer.
Firstly, our partner travel organization has organized many hikes to The Base Camp of Mount Everest. This travel company is comprised of local Nepalese who are intimately familiar with Nepal and The Mount Everest Base Camp route. Participating in our hike relieves you of the anxiety of searching for a reliable and established travel organization.
Secondly, this trip gives you the chance to meet other people who feel passionate about helping the global community. The participants of this trip will automatically have a unique bond because everyone involved will be working together to achieve two goals, reach Mount Everest Base Camp and help Nepali children.
Thirdly, you will be able to see who your money will help. Not only will you be able to see one of the most beautiful parts of Nepal as you climb Mount Everest, but you will also have the opportunity to visit programs your funds will benefit in Kathmandu.
Finally, and most importantly, your adventure will provide children of Nepal a chance for a better life. While participating in "the opportunity of a lifetime" you are also offering children "the opportunity for a better life."
How can I fundraise?
Once we have received your application and application fee we will send you a fundraising information pack that will help you to fundraise for your adventure in Nepal.
There are many ways of achieving and surpassing your financial goals. Ideas and examples of how to raise money for your adventure include:
Travel Insurance is a requirement for GVN's Fundraising Everest Base Camp Trek. You will need to purchase a comprehensive travel insurance packages which covers Emergency Evacuations. While trekking to Everest Base Camp, because of the altitude, it is very important that your insurance will cover for Emergency Evacuations. The Global Volunteer Network has arranged a comprehensive travel insurance package. It includes excellent medical and accident coverage as well as a ’loss of deposits’ cover which covers fees paid to GVN, airlines etc. If you would like to learn more just follow this link: http://www.volunteer.org.nz/insurance/.
Can you tell me more about Mt Everest?
Mount Everest is the highest mountain in the world. This giant sits on the crest of the Himalayan Range between Tibet and Nepal.
Mount Everest has many names. In Tibetan the name "Chomolongma" means "Mother Goddess of the World," in Nepalese the name "Sagarmatha" means "The Forehead of the Sky." Its English name, though not nearly as descriptive, connotes similar feelings of awe. At 8850m/29,035ft Mount Everest sits literally at the top of the world, nestled in the Himalayan Mountains of Nepal.
Mount Everest is on the border between Tibet and Nepal. This mountain offers the trekker the prestige of climbing to the base camp of the highest mountain in the world, while not requiring that the trekker have extensive climbing experience. Yet this climb is not to be taken lightly, it is a tough hike to Base Camp and only very physically fit people with a degree of mental preparedness will reach their goal.
Yet those who do succeed will find that standing at the base of the "Mother Goddess of the World" will be a sight not easily forgotten.
How fit do I need to be for this hike?
You will need to be very physically fit to attempt this hike.
Mount Everest is the highest mountain on Earth and even though you will not ascend to the summit, a trek to Base Camp is still a very demanding climb. The Mount Everest Base Camp trek is not going to be an "easy" walk but instead one of the toughest physical and mental challenges you will ever face.
You should be confident in your physical fitness before attempting this trek. You should be able to walk for several hours without too much of a problem. Aerobic activity, such as cycling or running, is a fantastic way to get and stay in shape. Hiking before this hike is the best means of preparing yourself for this adventure. Not only does hiking prepare you for the particular difficulties you'll face on this trek but it will also further assist you in your efforts to become physically fit.
The main concern on a trek of this nature is the altitude. The failure of the body to adapt quickly enough to the reduced level of oxygen in the air, as one reaches higher altitude, is the reason a person experiences altitude sickness. Most people who hike at altitude will have some form of altitude sickness. Mild symptoms include headaches, light-headedness, nausea, loss of appetite, tingling in the fingers and toes and mild swelling of the face/ankles/fingers. Altitude sickness seems to affect people indiscriminately, regardless of age or fitness level, yet becoming physically fit before your hike will increase your chances of having an overall enjoyable trip.
We recommend beginning a strict training regime 3 months prior to the trek, achieving max physical fitness 2 weeks before the actual trek to Mount Everest Base Camp.
After you have been accepted to our Mount Everest Base Camp Climb Team you will receive a link to our information packet. This packet describes altitude sickness and necessary physical fitness preparations.
How do I pay my fees?
Your program fee is payable to Global Volunteer Network 10 weeks prior to the 1st of the month you wish to volunteer. Please note, your placement is not confirmed (ie secured) until your program fee has been received. Please note that all charges incurred by the payment of the program fee are at the volunteer’s expense, e.g. if a bank transfer incurs a bank fee at the point of origin, that is at the expense of the volunteer. Seventy percent (70%) of the program fee is refundable until two calendar months before the 1st of the month you are due to begin your program. For example a volunteer with 15 July 2012 as their start date would need to submit their refund request form by the last day of April 2012 to be eligible for a refund. Refer to GVN's legal terms of service for full details.
Draped along the greatest heights of the Himalayas, the kingdom of Nepal is a land of sublime scenery, timeworn temples, and some of the best walking trails on earth. The kingdom is sandwiched between India to the south, and China and Tibet to the north. Although there are a few parts of the capital city, Kathmandu, that appear modern, most of Nepal is a very traditional society that depends on subsistence farming. Very few Westerners, apart from explorers and climbers, ever visited Nepal until the 1970's.
As a participant in this trek you will have the opportunity to visit ancient temples and palaces in Kathmandu, as well as the highest Buddhist monastery in the world, giving you the opportunity to observe Buddhist prayer rituals as you acclimate to an altitude of 12,687ft/3,867m. You will trek over glaciers and snow capped rocks as you ascend to the Base Camp of Mount Everest at 17,998ft/5,486m. Upon descending you will visit Sherpa villages, see the famed mountain yaks of the Himalayas and visit the hospital Sir Edmund Hilary created for the people of Nepal. Once you have returned to Kathmandu you will visit various projects designed by our partner to assist Nepali children as well as see the faces of the children your funds will benefit.
Development in Nepal
Nepal is one of the poorest counties in the world. Amongst its population of 27 million, 1 million are children without parents. The current unstable political situation in the country has further intensified the pressure and harsh conditions on the people of Nepal. These conditions have the worst effect on the most vulnerable members of society, and the ones who have the least resources help themselves: children, especially orphaned children.
Our partner in Nepal has created numerous programs to help these children. You now have the opportunity to work with them to support Nepali children while climbing the tallest mountain on Earth, Mount Everest.
Funds raised through this trek will support the 15 children living in the Brighter Future Children's Home. Our partner ensures that their health, nutritional and educational needs are met fully and the funds you raise will allow us to provide ongoing quarterly grants to cover the costs of these needs.
What else can I do in Nepal?
Visitors to Nepal will be amazed by the variety of sights and activities available – there’s something for everyone.
Visit Kathmandu’s Durbar Square, a palace in the traditional heart of the old town, or the Swayambhunath stupa `Monkey Temple,' try to catch a glimpse of a rhino or tiger in Chitwan National Park or take the opportunity to trek some of the most beautiful mountain ranges on earth.