Nepal is an amazing, enigmatic country full of contrasts, beauty and mystery. A tiny country pinned between India and China, with a population of 27 million and a per capita annual income of less than US$650, Nepal is among the poorest countries in the world and currently ranks 157 out of 187 countries on the Human Development Index. Poverty, political instability, inadequate education, pollution, and unemployment are as much a part of modern day Nepal as its astounding nature, biodiversity, mountains, rivers, cultures and people.
As raft guides and kayakers we believe that the whitewater community can help address in a small way some of these challenges, so in 2011 we created the Nepal Kayak & Canoe Club. The Nepal Kayak & Canoe Club is a non-profit organization committed to promoting education, certification, skills development, professionalism and opportunities for Nepal’s whitewater community. The club aims to act as community meet-up point and to help young Nepali kayakers hone their natural talent and progress into world-class kayakers, certified instructors and guides.
Here are some of the things we’re working on:
-Organize and host annual whitewater festivals and competitions.
-Provide necessary river equipment and funds to train young Nepali boys and girls. Kayaking and safety equipment is hard to afford for the average Nepali.
-Facilitate training courses and certifications. Many Nepali kayakers have lots of natural talent, but lack the certifications necessary to teach and work abroad.
-Give young Nepalese an opportunities to explore the rivers in their own country by funding their project. We do also encourage foreign paddlers to hire certified local kayakers to help make their experience in Nepal safer and more enjoyable.
-Provide an online forum for paddlers in Nepal and international to communicate, buy and sell equipment and coordinate events.
-Provide opportunities for school kids who live near the river to learn and progress their kayaking skills without leaving school. More than half of Nepali primary level students do not enter secondary schools, and only one-half of them actually complete secondary schooling. Most Nepali kayakers quit school early and permanently to work in the rafting industry.
-Promoting river conservation and stewardship: we want to keep the rivers clean and flowing.
The sport of whitewater kayaking is intrinsically international in nature – and so are we. Joining the NKCC is a great inexpensive way to connect with paddlers not only from Nepal, but also from around the globe. We strive to bring kayakers together with the common goal of improving skills and having fun on the river. Our members and supporters are some of the most talented and respected river professionals in Nepal. Together we have a wealth of unparalleled experience running amazing Himalayan rivers in every corner of Nepal.
The Nepal Kayak & Canoe Club is definitely not going to solve all of these problems, but we would like to solve many of them. This way we can support the new generations. Live a little give a little.
For more info on how you can help, click here