Community Action Nepal wins UIAA Mountain Protection Award

Posted by Peter Burnside on 07/11/2018
Founder and legendary mountaineer Doug Scott CBE celebrates winning. Photo: CAN

Community Action Nepal (CAN), a charity which has been operating in Nepal for over 20 years, was announced as the sixth winner of the annual UIAA Mountain Protection Award at the 2018 UIAA General Assembly in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, in early October.

CAN was set up by legendary mountaineer and former UIAA Management Committee member Doug Scott CBE, the first Briton (with Dougal Haston) to climb Everest in 1975. In creating CAN, Scott wanted to give something back to the mountain people of Nepal who had helped him climb 14 peaks in the country. It was a key legacy which emerged from the historic 1975 British Everest SW Face Expedition.

In 2015, CAN’s focus took on a more specific objective. Following the devastating earthquake which hit Nepal in April of that year, the charity’s strategy was directed towards supporting the recovery of earthquake-affected communities in remote mountain areas.

Much of CAN’s own work over two decades was wiped out in a matter of minutes following the disaster which killed nearly 9,000 people, injured more than 22,000, destroyed entire villages, displaced almost 3.5 million individuals and caused over 10 billion dollars’ worth of infrastructure damage. Century-old buildings, monasteries and temples were destroyed at UNESCO World Heritage Sites in a number of areas including Kathmandu, Lalitpur and Bhaktapur.

CAN’s recovery work has been directed towards rebuilding vital community assets such as health posts, schools, porter shelters and gompas, while at the same time maintaining core health and educational provision and supporting livelihoods. New buildings have been designed to be more earthquake resistant ensuring that should another disaster occur, the infrastructure will prove more robust.

WATCH: The Community Action Nepal showreel 

“Assigning this year’s winner was a difficult task,” explained UIAA Mountain Protection Commission President Dr Carolina Adler. “The score results among the top-ranking projects were very close. Nevertheless, CAN and its work in post-earthquake recovery in Nepal, has been instrumental in helping to support the rebuilding efforts of local communities who themselves provide so much for mountaineers in their pursuits in the mountains. It is great to see this solidarity”.

Doug Scott paid tribute to the sterling efforts of the CAN team. “Receiving this is just reward for the trust that some 5,000 donors have placed in CAN, the unstinting help of more than a hundred UK volunteers, our dedicated and hard-working UK and Nepal staff and the whole-hearted, hands-on support from our trustees, both here in the UK and in Nepal, over many years.”

CAN, whose work is driven by a motivation to help protect mountain communities and is underpinned by the principles of sustainability and the protection of the environment, was one of eighteen projects nominated for the 2018 UIAA Mountain Protection Award.

Following KTK-Belt in 2015 and the Mount Everest Biogas Project in 2017, CAN is the third winning project which works closely with Nepalese mountain communities.

“We are very pleased to see a broad range of projects nominated for the MPA this year, in particular it is great to see a genuine interest and action, on behalf of the mountaineering community, on issues of development and support for the livelihoods of communities that live in the mountains and with whom we have direct interaction as part of our own visits to the mountains,” continued Adler.

WATCH: BMC Travel Insurance built for the mountains

Rock Up Abroad with BMC Travel Insurance

Wherever the hot rock calls, make sure that you go prepared with our travel insurance before you head off.

You can get cover with a BMC Rock policy from just £56* for a week. 

BMC Travel Insurance comes in five policies: Travel, Trek, Rock, Alpine and Ski and High Altitude. 

*Policy details: £55.21 for 7 days European Rock policy, price for up to age 69.  

For full terms and conditions see our Evidence of Cover

Europe by Train

Seat61 has a plethora of information, ready-planned for you to make your train journeys to Europe plain sailing. We fully recommend checking out the routes available and booking in advance to get the best deals on cheaper tickets.

PLAN YOUR TRAVEL: Use public transport routes from Seat61 to help you plan your low-impact travels

« Back

Post a comment Print this article

This article has been read 1792 times


Click on the tags to explore more

Post a Comment

Posting as Anonymous Community Standards
3000 characters remaining
Your comment has been posted below, click here to view it
Comments are currently on | Turn off comments

There are currently no comments, why not add your own?

Join 82,000 BMC members and support British climbing, walking and mountaineering. Membership only £16.97.
Read more »
Great range of guidebooks, DVDs, books, calendars and maps.
All with discounts for members.
Read more »
Get covered with BMC Insurance. Our five policies take you from the beach to Everest.
Read more »