“Through working with KPAP, I have been able to build a house, support a niece in her education and have a pig farm as a side business. These changes were unimaginable before KPAP and for this I am forever grateful. I feel badly when I see other porters suffering with non-Partner companies. I wish all companies would join KPAP as I see these porters are getting their rights.“
“There is a big difference between now and [before joining] KPAP. I have benefitted a lot and have made huge steps in life. My children are in school, I rent a farm for agriculture and I also keep 3 goats and 2 sheep, all from my mountain wages. I have diversified my income sources when not working on the mountain. I sell shoes and clothes and do food vending, depending on the seasons and opportunity. May God bless KPAP because they have helped us a lot.”
“I started with non-partner companies and things were not easy. It was very discouraging — some days we only got one meal in the evening and the amount [of food] was not adequate and bags were heavy. When I started working with a KPAP partner company the procedures were clear and the porters’ rights were taken seriously. Personally, I have gained self-awareness and I have learned good behaviors from working with KPAP Partner companies. I had dreamed of moving to a more decent settlement and I’ve attained this. I have been able to buy a plot of land and I have made a big step in life.”
“Starting with a non-partner company the job was hard, carrying heavy bags, starving for some days with only one meal at dinner which wasn’t enough at all. I was fortunate to get registered with a KPAP Partner company which was the turning point for my life. Now I could pay school fees for my children and am proud as one of my children is in Tanga for field studies and another is planning to attend form five [advance level] in Singida. Another major benefit for me is being able to meet my family’s basic needs of food and shelter. I have also started building a house and it is in its initial stages.”
“The working conditions for porters changed when KPAP came on the scene. There is a big difference between KPAP and non-KPAP companies. When working with the KPAP partner companies, I no longer pay a bribe to join a climbing team and receive the 20,000 Tsh per day salary recommended by the government. Furthermore, a transparent tip procedure increases my earnings per trip. I wish more companies would become KPAP partners.”
Like most women, Emmy was determined to do everything she could to give her children a chance in life that she never had. Mountain climbing was the only work she had come across which helped her meet these needs. “In 2017 I became affiliated with KPAP. I have since been able to rely on timely salary payments and receive a porter’s fair share of tips. Meals, bag weight, sleeping and climbing gear arrangements are managed satisfactorily.” With her limited education, engaging in porter work in an environment of fairness has become a viable job option.
At the age of 35 Freddy became a porter and experienced hardships initially. Becoming affiliated with KPAP, he was able to convert his mother’s mud home into a three-room brick house in three years. Freddy comments that had he kept working for non-KPAP partner companies, renovation of his mother’s house would have taken him much longer and he is certain that keeping up with his children’s education expenses would have been impossible.
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Donations made through our parent organization, the International Mountain Explorers Connection, a 501c(3) nonprofit organization, are tax-deductible according to U.S. law for U.S. donors.