Glasgow University Everest Base Climb Club embarks on an adventure for a cause
A group of UofG students will be going to the Himalayas to raise money for WWF
The University of Glasgow is a coveted academic destination for countless ambitious students, offering ample opportunities for networking, developing new hobbies and skills, and creating unique experiences and memories through the numerous communities and themed clubs on campus.
One such community is the UofG Everest Base Climb. The club has recently sparked a new wave of intrigue and interest from many students, but most of them are not fully familiar with the specific activities and goals of the society.
The UofG Everest Base Climb is in the midst of preparing for an 11 day trek that will take them to an elevation of 5,645 meters above sea level. The expedition is part of the UofG Choose a Challenge Everest team, which is organised by Choose a Challenge, a charity that facilitates various fundraising treks.
This year, the UofG Everest team is dedicating its efforts to raising funds for the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). Anoushka Ross, a first year student who recently joined the club, kindly provided some valuable insights into this thrilling adventure and its purpose.
Scaling to the base of Everest requires high levels of fitness and endurance, which can only be achieved through a targeted sports routine and a healthy, balanced diet. Anoushka admits the demanding nature of the climb, citing high altitude and intensity as significant factors. The trek is guided by experts and involves stops at tea houses and viewpoints to aid acclimatisation; participants must maintain a high level of physical fitness, as this adventure is not for the faint-hearted.
When asked why students should be interested in joining, Anoushka highlighted the dual appeal of adventure and supporting a good cause. She expressed her passion for nature and the environment, noting that the WWF’s conservation efforts align with the crucial need to preserve wildlife.
Anoushka told The Tab Glasgow that this climb as a unique opportunity to explore the world while contributing to a cause she deeply cares about. Additionally, the opportunity to visit Mount Everest may only come once in a lifetime for individuals with full-time jobs.
Regarding the financial aspect, Anoushka acknowledged the substantial fundraising required for the trek and the additional expense of purchasing hiking equipment.
“That will depend on each student individually and what they already have. It is a lot of money to fundraise just for the trek itself and buying hiking equipment on top of that can be a lot.”
Anoushka aims to raise £2,500 and plans to allocate her Christmas pay towards essential equipment, seeking advice from experienced hikers on suitable purchases. Put in other way, participants have to understand that saving up for a trip like that is crucial due to the risks and challenges of such an expedition.
Anoushka’s objectives go beyond the physical challenge; she aims to raise awareness and funds for WWF. She emphasised the importance of understanding where the raised funds go, citing some of the WWF`s previous campaigns.
She said: “For example, WWF-Brazil recently worked with the ethno-environmental defence association to train indigenous environmental agents in how to use technology to protect their homes in the Amazon rainforest. This helped them submit complaints about illegal invasions and activity on their lands that led to the seizure of eight trucks illegally extracting wood.
“WWF has many similar projects running worldwide working with local communities to help protect the environment and those that live there. This is just one of the many reasons that I decided to join.”
Her decision to join reflects a belief in individual impact and a desire to inspire others to make a difference.
We were also able to speak with Everest Base Climb club leader Theo about his thoughts. Speaking about the opportunities the climb brings, he said: “Some of the main reasons people join are to have a once-in-a-lifetime experience in the Himalayas, and to help make the world a better place at the same time! It also looks great on a CV to be able to say you’ve put the time and effort into fundraising over the course of a year, and learnt valuable skills along the way.
“The challenge is an incredible opportunity in so many ways: You get to explore the amazing city of Kathmandu, spend time on the world’s highest mountain (also home to the world’s highest Irish pub!), make lifelong friends and make a real, positive difference in the world through your fundraising. It can be hard work, but it’s one of the most rewarding experiences as a student!”.
The UofG Everest Base Climb Club’s journey goes beyond a physical ascent; it is a symbolic climb for a cause. Anoushka and her fellow climbers aim to showcase that students can contribute to global conservation efforts.
As the team prepares for this once-in-a-lifetime adventure, they invite others to join them in supporting the vital work of the WWF and hope to attract as many adventurous and cunning students as possible.