Lake Titicaca Paddle Project
Anyone who has visited the Andean Lake communities of Peru and Bolivia will have noticed that beyond the abundant serenity and beauty of these villages is an unsettling lack of education about the conservation and ecological significance of their environment. These people rely completely on the lake as a source of food, water, building material, transportation, and waste disposal, yet they don’t even know how to swim.
With the impact of tourism, plastics, pesticides, and population ever increasing, it’s necessary to improve education platforms to include these topics. Our program works with the youth of these lake communities to enrich their overall relationship with the water through the sport of standup paddling (SUP).
In November 2014, three athletes will paddle 90 miles (150km) at an altitude of over 12500ft (3800m) across the waters of Lake Titicaca—from Puno, Peru to Ancoamaya, Bolivia—to raise awareness to these issues as well as generate funding for our two pilot SUP schools. This epic, four-day paddle will test the athletes’ physical and mental endurance as well as their ability to face the challenges of extreme heat, cold, wind, exposure, and high-altitude.
1. To raise funds to properly equip our two pilot SUP schools in Peru on Lake Puiray in Chincheros, Cusco, and Chorrillos, Lima
2. To increase local and global awareness of the historical, ecological and geographical significance of these high Andean lakes, their people, and their conservation
3. To promote ecotourism
4. To officially introduce the sport of SUP to the country of Bolivia
What we need:
We need your help! The target goal of $15,000 is just the beginning of what we will eventually need to help these schools grow in to what we know they are capable of being. This amount is also higher than what we will actually receive from this fundraiser as 30% will go towards fees and perk fulfillment.
For the Titicaca Paddle: We will need transport for athletes and boards to and from start and finish; on-shore accommodations for prep days in Puno; camping and rentals equipment for the 4-days paddling; payment for support and media crew plus vehicle; all food and necessary provisions for the duration. We estimate this amount to be about $1,000 per person or $3,000 total.
For the schools: All the remaining funds we raise, whether we reach our goal or not, will go directly to equipping the two schools in Piuray and Chorillos. We are in need of boards, paddles, wetsuits, leashes, life jackets, and eventually the facilities and capability to expand this program to reach more communities.