Our inaugural WOK event in 2013 was a mind-blowing expedition for all involved! The WOK journey has gone from strength to strength ever since.
Check out our original WOK 2013 website here: www.wingsofkilimanjaro.com/2013
And our list of pilots and participants here: www.wingsofkilimanjaro.com/2013/index.php/pilots/official-pilots-full-list/
The WOK 2013 Story:
In January 2013, a team of 95 adventure philanthropists came together from around the globe to help Tanzanians in need. The team, the largest group to ever climb the world’s tallest free standing mountain, Kilimanjaro, aimed to do something a little remarkable, other than just ascend the 19,340ft high peak. The team also aimed to fly from the summit, in a world first attempt something that is usually banned by the Tanzanian Government.
Only a tropical cyclone would stop these adventurers from launching from the summit (TC Felleng).When the majority of the Wings of Kilimanjaro group descended on foot, we had a small passionate team of para-dreamers remain for one extra day to see if more suitable conditions would follow. On February 7, those remaining decided to descend leaving just one pilot on the mountain; Nepalese Pilot Sano Babu Sunuwar with his guide Matthew Lyimo. The pair climbed back to the summit and successfully launched, becoming the first officially sanctioned people to paraglide from Mount Kilimanjaro. It was a fitting end to an extraordinary event and the Wings of Kilimanjaro organisers were delighted that Matthew Lyimo who has been a guide on Kilimanjaro for many years was part of this historic flight.
The mission of Wings of Kilimanjaro 2013 was to raise US $1Million for three charities making a difference on the ground in East Africa; Plant with Purpose, WorldServe International and The One Foundation. The Wings of Kilimanjaro organising team would like to thank the incredible team that assembled together in Tanzania, for not only being part of our crazy little project, but for all their incredible efforts raising funds and awareness for Tanzanians in need.
The WOK 2013 expedition was made possible by a small but passionate team from Australia who worked for over 3 years to plan this extraordinary event!
Wings of Kilimanjaro founder, Adrian McRae, summits Mt Kilimanjaro & Mt Kenya.
Adrian takes up paragliding at the Australian Paragliding Centre.
Adrian conceives an idea for a fundraising event, publishing the concept on the paragliding forum (pgforum.com) under the title Kili20twelve (based on an unofficial launch date of Sept 2012).
Registrations of Interest opens for pilots and reaches 100 pilots within weeks.
Charity nominations open.
Registrations of Interest for pilots passes the 200 mark… and keeps going. Registrations close for charities, with more than 80 nominations received. The process begins to select the final beneficiaries for the event, including checks to ensure complete transparency for funds delivery and allocation.
Official documents received, including the big one… permits to allow the flight off Mt Kilimanjaro’s summit.
Charity partners announced – Plant With Purpose and One Difference.
After many months of research and discussions with experts about issues such as launch dates, participant safety, appropriate fundraising platforms, financial agreements, and project delays due to the above, the team make the ultimate decision to shift the launch date. As a consequence, due to the refined project focus, Kili20twelve is rebranded as Wings Of Kilimanjaro with confirmed event dates 27th Jan to 8th Feb 2013 (launch date is 5th Feb).
The WOK team took a reconnaissance climb to assess the appropriate route to the summit, and schedule surrounding the climb and launch. During this trip, the team had a meeting with Deputy Minister of Natural Resources and Tourism, The Honourable Mr Lazaro Nyalandu, ironing out the final details of the event.
The WOK team also visits some Plant with Purpose projects on the ground, meet with Duncan Goose (founder of One Difference) and establishes a new relationship with WOK’s third beneficiary – WorldServe International.
Wings of Kilimanjaro Project Manager, Paula McRae relocates to Tanzania for preparations leading up to the event.
8 NOVEMBER 2012
Wings of Kilimanjaro host their official media launch against the dramatic skyline of the City of London from the Ceiling Room of the Iconic Gherkin! (It really was the most impressive view we have ever seen – second only to the top of Kilimanjaro). Media had the opportunity to hear from Wings of Kilimanjaro project leader Adrian McRae, adventurer and all-action girl Squash Falconer and Police Commissioner Adrian Leppard. The attendees also had the opportunity to hear from philanthropists Duncan Goose, Founder of One Foundation, Doug Satre of Plant with Purpose and Allan Guinan of WorldServe International.
10 NOVEMBER 2012
Wings of Kilimanjaro takes part in the prestigious annual Lord Mayors Show in London! The float was put together by the incredible Jane Ripley, of Ripley and Friends. Wings of Kilimanjaro would like to thank Roger Gifford, London Lord Mayor for his kind invitation for us to join in the parade, which saw the team of volunteers and Wings of Kilimanjaro float featured on BBC 1 and broadcast to over 40 Million People across the UK and Europe.
28 NOVEMBER 2012
Wings of Kilimanjaro Project Manager, Paula McRae dines with His Excellency, President of Tanzania. H.E Jakaya Mrisho Kikwete who gives his full endorsement of the project.
17 JANUARY 2013
Wings of Kilimanjaro Project Manager, Paula McRae meets with his Honourable Khamis Kagasheki, Minister of Natural Resources and Tourism who gives WOK his departments reinforced support.
27 JANUARY 2013
The team of 95 adventurers from 26 countries assemble together at Ngurdoto Mountain Lodge for the official team briefing.
28 JANUARY 2013
TANAPA & WOK team co-host the official press event to welcome the group to Tanzania and to kick off Wings of Kilimanjaro festivities.
29 JANUARY – 6 FEBRUARY 2013
Wings of Kilimanjaro begins. For the official event media release from the WOK team, please click on the below link.
7 FEBRUARY – 9 FEBRUARY 2013
The Wings of Kilimanjaro team spent two days visiting projects they have supported via their fundraising initiatives with our charity partners; Plant with Purpose, One Foundation & WorldServe International.
What we have achieved so far… what we got to see and be part of.
Through our partner Plant with Purpose, so far we have been able to establish 30 new Village Community Banks (VICOBA’s) specialising in microfinance and environmental restoration among poor farming communities. Through a joint venture with WorldServe International and the One Foundation, we have begun construction of our first primary school at Emboreet Village, a remote and impoverished Maasai community in the Simanjiro region. Coupled with the school construction have been the hydrological surveys, drilling and delivery of 4 new and clean water wells which are self-managed through our solar pumping station and above- ground water storage facility. Turning the clean water on for the first time, followed by some overwhelming Maasai cheering was certainly a moment we will remember forever!
The group departed Tanzania having already raised in excess of $600,000 USD with much more being raised in the subsequent years. Event Organisers will continue the push towards their $1M goal for Tanzanian charity projects. To assist us in our journey, we welcome you to donate to www.wingsofkilimanjaro.com/donate
17 FEBRUARY 2013
The Wings of Kilimanjaro Expedition appears on Australia’s 60 Minutes Programme on Channel 9, hosted by Allison Langdon. To view the official ‘Mountain Madness’ footage, please click on the below link.