Help us meet our goal of raising $50,000

Saturday, March 31, 2007

Update on the progress of GEI

It's been a long time since I posted. I've been really busy doing the PR/marketing for the HERA Climb For Life event in Boulder, Colorado, this summer (to read more, go to the HERA Foundation website:

Anyway, here's the scoop on GEI. I've been working with this fellow named Andrew Council, a climbing guide for the Colorado Mountain School. He's heading over to Pakistan in the next few weeks. Plus, I've talked with our main contact over there, Abbas, this morning in fact. He's been snowed in most of the winter, and so we haven't had a chance to touch base. Basically, Andrew will be heading over to Khane for a day to talk with Abbas on his way to Khande, where he will train mountain guides. Andrew will be bringing a list of questions over (how many girls in the school, what exactly needs to be renovated, how long it might take Abbas to find a teacher, etc). Abbas will put together a document that answers all these questions and also details the most pressing needs for the school. He will then send this information back to me either via Andrew or via email.

The GEI team will put together a long term plan of attack to completely renovate the girls' school. We will use this plan to apply for grants from the American Alpine Club and other places. At the same time, we will be planning a slide show tour for Heidi, during which she will travel around the country raising fund and awareness for Girls Education International.

Additionally, Fabrizio Zangrelli will be going to Pakistan summer 2007 to climb K2. On his way out, he and maybe Heidi (if we can afford to send her to Pakistan) will work with Abbas in Khane to implement the first phases of the Khane plan. This year it might just be repairing and white washing the school and hiring a new teacher. We currently have about $1600 in the bank account, which should cover basic repairs and a teacher for 6 months. After Heidi's fundraiser tour, we should have enough money to pay for the teacher for another few years.

We believe that the most pressing need at this time for the school is to hire a qualified teacher. We hope to get new desks, school supplies, a privacy/protection fence around the perimeter, a larger garden, and scholarships in place over the next five years.

In regards to the raffle for the Montbell Sleeping bag. We have about 125 people who have donated and entered the raffle. We hope to get at least 75 more people to donate. Please donate at Thanks!

One more thing: Heidi has decided to be the head of the Board of Directors. We have another few people who have expressed interest in being on the board. We are looking for motivated people who are interested in raising money and awareness for educating girls abroad.