2019 marks a big milestone for the Alpine Ascents Foundation for we are celebrating our 20th year educating children in Nepal! As we look back on these past 20 years of AAF, we are overjoyed at the generosity of spirit, time and money. From the first students that began their education, to the first graduates from 10th grade, to building a Nursery School addition to the Shree Himalaya School, to today where students are asking to continue their education into university. We are thrilled!
The establishing of the Alpine Ascents Foundation - Sherpa Education Fund has been a significant accomplishment and it brings all of us great joy knowing that there is something happening that is far bigger than ourselves. A legacy of education in an under served country where education is not mandatory. We currently have 63 children being educated from K-University in 5 different schools throughout Nepal not including the universities.
Together we have formed a sustainable non-profit and we are so thankful to all of you who have throughout these 20 years supported us. It is not one, but many who stand together to educate these children and we are all forever grateful.
Going Forward: We currently have a few students without sponsors and need your help to keep them in school; therefore we are looking for new sponsors for the 2019 school year at a cost of $2500 per sponsorship.
Why: Your sponsorship will change the life of a student through education and you will develop a close personal relationship with a Nepali student.
All administration costs for the Alpine Ascents Foundation are paid for by Alpine Ascents International. This means 100% of your sponsorship goes to the students!
In the spirit of this season of giving, we ask that you give the Gift of Education by either sponsoring a student for a years education or donating to the AAF general fund. Please donate today to give these children a chance at a better educated life.
Thank you from the AAF Board,
Todd and Dane' Burleson, Gordon Janow, Lakpa Rita Sherpa, and Gary Harrington
AAF Spotlights one of our amazing students, Lhakpa Tenzing Sherpa - his words are heartfelt and completely appreciative of the gift of education which you as sponsors of the Alpine Ascents Foundation have given to him. He with his brother, Gyal-zen Sherpa started their education under the direction of AAF at the ages of 7 and 9 respectively. They are both attending university and pursuing their dreams of a better educated life. We are delighted to share Lhakpa's story with you.
Your generous donations through these amazing 20 years have given many children in Nepal an education. So during this holiday season we ask that you consider giving the gift of education.
I am Lhakpa Tenzing Sherpa one of the students who has been under the program of Alpine Ascent Foundation (AAF) since the age of 7, and this is my story “First year at SPU.”
I did my high school at Kathmandu Valley Higher Secondary School, my A Levels at Saipal Academy, and right now I am studying at Seattle Pacific University here in Seattle, WA. It surely has been a long journey, but of all those times, this first year at SPU was the biggest learning curve, with tons of new experiences. All thanks to the Alpine Ascent Foundation and their generous donors who have made this possible. Getting into SPU with 90% scholarship was not very easy, I did have to work really hard for it. But as much as I credit my hard work for this achievement, I equally value and credit AAF for their continuous support.
Moving from a school that had 300 students at maximum to SPU with 4500 students was one of the biggest shocks. Even though SPU is a small school here, it is the biggest school that I had ever imagined to go to. Apart from that, there was a lot of shocks that I felt in terms of languages, culture, friends and above all the education system. Like, everyone, I had a hard time adjusting to it, but soon enough I got used to it. I was slowly getting involved in the activities organized around campus and was making more and more friends and above all, I was learning as much as I could in every possible way. Soon enough after my third week of school, I got my first on-campus job at the Athletes department where I learned more about the working style here in America which was obviously way different than that of Nepal. My classes, on the other hand, were also going smoothly as I was working as hard as I could to compete with all the other students and moreover to get myself better than I was yesterday.
Apart from keeping up with my grades, I was also getting involved in other activities. As by my second quarter I already had a group of friends sharing a common interest, we made an intramural soccer team. Even though it was pretty competitive we ended up winning both the intramural men-soccer during the winter quarter and coed-soccer during the spring quarter. Which gave us a chance to compete in Seattle cup, where all the intramural champions from colleges like Seattle University, University of Washington and Seattle Pacific University come together and compete. Unfortunately, we didn’t win this Seattle Cup, but we really had a great time together knowing each other, which I believe is more important than anything else.
At the same time, I also came to realize that we had an Outdoor Recreation Program at SPU. An organization run by SPU student Leaders under the supervision of SPU faculties with a motive to help students enjoy the outdoors. As soon as I heard about it, I was pretty sure I wanted to get involved with them. I did a bunch of normal hikes, snowshoeing, white river rafting, and rock-climbing trips. I was so attached to this organization that I wanted to be a part of it and do something for the students who love the outdoors like me. So, after spending some time on my application, I got into it. Yes!! I am now one of the student leaders of SPU leading this organization as an assistant for the term 2018-19. Until now this is one of my achievements that I cherish the most at SPU, it's not because I got one of the two seats among all the other 50 applicants, but because I now am not just educating myself through classes but also by leading other students.
Talking about my major and what I will do about the opportunity that I am given, I initially had a thought of studying Business Administration, Accounting more specifically with an intention of getting a well-paid job in the near future or establishing my own business if everything goes well. But after thinking through and reflecting on myself (which was a thing that I learned at SPU). I thought I have to do something more. I came to realize how so many generous people like the donors and the organizers of AAF have been working together to make some impact on the world by funding the education of the kids they have never met. Noticing such act, made me realize my role play in this world. Which I want to do by working more in the social sector and helping the ones in need. Therefore, now my intended major is Global Development Studies.
Even though I came a long way from where I was a few years ago, I still don’t consider myself a talented or a gifted guy, but I do consider myself a hardworking kid who has gotten an opportunity that very few people have. And keeping that in my mind I have been and will still keep chasing my dream, trying to get better every day so that I can bring a multiplier effect of all the generous contribution that all the donors and AAF has made on me.
Thank you very much all the donors of AAF and especially Todd and Dane' for being the core of this organization and always motivating me personally.