The Kilimanjaro Initiative was founded in 2005 and the main objective is to encourage young people to have self-belief and to assist in providing opportunities that will enable them to take on a constructive role in their communities. Key activities include:
- Raise Awareness as part of the global United Nations campaign ‘UNite to Combat Climate Change’ through the media, partners and youth networks.
- Create a synergy with individuals and organizations, with the goal of tackling issues related to protection of the environment.
- Fundraise for the sponsorship of youths and projects aimed at providing ‘greener’ and ‘better’ cities for all.
- Launch Kilimanjaro Initiative NGO, leading to the increase in its membership and activities.
As a key feature of its activities, the initiative organizes an annual ascent of Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain on the African continent.
In a powerful symbol of the unifying and stimulating role of sport in community and individual development, the group included 10 urban youth from disadvantaged communities throughout Africa and Brazil, as well as representatives from the private sector, the United Nations and NGOs including Fight for Peace, the Monaco-based international organization Peace and Sport, and US-based Play Soccer.
Since 2006 the Kilimanjaro Initiative has brought more than 100 youth, athletes, musicians and representatives of the private and public sector to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro. The annual ascent to the highest peak in Africa is organized each year around a different theme.
In 2007, the objective was to stress the need for youth empowerment and employment; in 2008, to foster peace in Kenya, which was wracked by the post-election violence; and in 2009, the goal was to raise awareness about the dangers of climate change in relation to urban safety. In addition to creating a very positive spirit of change, the Kilimanjaro Initiative raises funds for youth-based community projects in Kenya and Tanzania, which focus on the role youth groups, with their local knowledge, skills and practical experience can play towards the physical, economic and social development of their communities.
Kilimanjaro Initiative 2011
UNEP staff join Kilimanjaro Climb
UNEP team at Gilman's Point, Mt Kilimanjaro - Stuart Roberts, Joanna Benn and Lisa Yazdabadi of Climate Action
Highlights by Mt. Kilimanjaro Climber Tim Challen
Kilimanjaro Initiative Bicycle Ride Flag Off
Kilimanjaro Initiative 2010
The 2010 climb took place on 1-5 March and brought together 35 climbers from countries including Antigua & Barbuda, Brazil, Burundi, Eritrea, France, Grenada, Italy, Kenya, New Zealand, South Africa, Tanzania, the UK, and the US, all aiming to highlight the key role of sport in fostering peace and development.
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon's Message to Participants of the Kilimanjaro Initiative’s 2009 Unite to Combat Climate Change Climb
Kilimanjaro Climb supported by Mr. Wilfried Lemke, Special Adviser to the United Nations Secretary-General on Sport for Development and Peace
Highlights by Mt. Kilimanjaro Climbers Fanina Kodre-Alexander, Emmakate Young and Tim Challen