Rising above the challenges set before us...

This will likely be the only post for July as I am off and traveling next week, will see you all in August...most likely with some amazing photos and stories to share.

Rising Above...
This past Tuesday I had the first chance to take some of the children rock climbing at a local amusement center (Putt Putt), which has a 25'-30' wall they have started to let us use. My previous climbing experience in Lebanon didn't end up so positive (lack of water+heat=dehydration) so I really had my hopes up for this time with the kids. First of all, it felt really good putting on the harness and clipping all the 'biners and belay equipment to it. In addition to the "feel good" moment of "dressing up" for climbing I was about to share this interest of mine with a bunch of children that had never experienced something like this. My overall goal is to use climbing to teach some teamwork skills and build confidence, but the children need to be exposed a little to the climbing wall and know that they are safe with what they're doing. I am starting with the residential students first but hope to expand this to include the school children in the fall.

I took six of the residential students and with the help of two co-workers had them harnessed up and ready to climb. There were mixed levels of success with how high up the wall the students made it but I am extremely proud of the fact they all attempted it and didn't give up when it got difficult. I will take another group on Monday for a couple of hours and see how they do, but if the willingness and success of the first six are any sign then I am quite confident they next few groups I do will excel.

Needs and Prayer for Climbing...
Before I travel next week I hope to draft a letter to some climbing gyms and fellow climbers, asking for support. Please pray that these letters and contacts will provide some much needed equipment for this project. If you are interested in being a sponsor for this project (more information to be posted here soon) please contact me. Unless you live in Lebanon I am going to have to request that the support be financial in nature, getting the equipment shipped here to Lebanon will be expensive and I do have a local outfitter I can get everything from. Putt Putt has generously allowed us to use their wall and have acccess to their equipment, but there may be times when we climb at other sites (away from Mansourieh and formal climbing walls).

Specific Needs and Items:
  • Belay device (Gris-Gris) x 1
  • small/one size fits all harnesses x 4
  • locking carabiners x 4
  • quick draw x 1
  • sling/sling material
  • rope (about 75-80 meters) and storage bag
  • bouldering crash pad (to work with older residents away from the campus and Putt Putt)
The estimated cost for this project is around $700-$800 USD (as of 7/17/09). I will be visiting the outdoor store this weekend to get estimates and see if I can get them to discount the equipment for us.

I will purchase the items as I get the financial resources to do so and if the money is sent via Kids Alive it may also be able to be counted as a charitable contribution and eligible for a tax deduction.

Post a Comment