Tous les articles par Rotaract Paris Haussmann

Kilimanjaro « A piece of cake »

Kilimanjaro « A piece of cake »

C’est par cette déclaration que l’aventure s’est terminée. Ce n’est pas moi l’auteur mais bien de Florian le guide de notre aventure, exprimée au moment de la remise des diplômes et traditionnelles photos souvenirs et accolades qui accompagnent protocolairement la fin d’une ascension.

Même si cette formulation est volontairement encourageante pour les futurs aspirants au Kilimanjaro, il n’en demeure pas moins que les émotions et les sensations qui ont émanées de cette aventure sont partagées entre émerveillement, souffrance et fierté. Ce fut pour ainsi dire une semaine d’une rare intensité physique dont le courage fut le maître-mot.

Mais par où cette histoire a-t-elle commencée ? Quelle était la raison louable ayant poussé à une pareille entreprise ? Qui étaient les têtes brûlées capable d’une telle audace ? Que fut notre quotidien durant cette expédition ?

Continuer la lecture de Kilimanjaro « A piece of cake »

Macon Dunnagan about Climbing Kilimanjaro 2015

Aftermovie – Climbing Mont Blanc to End Polio

Rotariens Climbing Kilimanjaro for Polio


In September, 2012, 30 Rotarians from the Charlotte area (Rotary District 7680) climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa.  The Rotary climbers and friends raised over $100,000 to help end polio globally.

Their efforts were part of Rotary International’s End Polio Now initiative which protects children around the world with polio vaccines to eradicate this disease forever.

Rotarian Macon Dunnagan, 53, a veteran of 25 Kilimanjaro climbs, led the team.  These valiant Rotarian and non-Rotarian climbers were awed by Tanzania’s great beauty, dismayed by the abject poverty and lack of modern conveniences, and touched by the warm, friendly and generous native peoples they met during their six-day trek.

Rotarian Scott Melius, 44, summed the Kilimanjaro climb best.  “The climb was exceptional!  The cause was admirable.  The people were the very best part, the porters and the guides remarkable in spirit and strength,” he said.

According to Bob Wilson, 67, past district governor of Rotary District 7680, the Rotary motto of “Service Above Self” was exemplified by those who climbed the 19,344 foot mountain, including non-Rotarian Hadley Trotter, 31.  Trotter’s expertise in emergency medicine and incredible compassion were a classic example of the essence of a Rotarian, he added.

Another Rotarian, Rich Sampson, 65, recalled meeting a Swahili gentleman who explained he’d been crippled by polio as a child, able only to get around using his hands, which were covered by flip-flops.  Thanks to the local Rotary Club in Tanzania he has been provided work and mobility through the use of a small three-wheeled vehicle.

Climber Allen Langley, 51, immediate past Rotary district governor, felt privileged to be a part of Rotary International’s National Immunization Day in India two years ago. “I cannot describe how that event impacted my life and my feeling of purpose as a Rotarian. When I held those small children and tiny babies to administer the drops that would prevent them from developing the crippling disease of polio, I knew that as an individual I was making a huge impact in the lives of not only them but their families as well,” said Langley.

The fight to end polio is led by the Global Polio Eradication Initiative, which includes Rotary International, UNICEF, the World Health Organization, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and governments of the world, with the support of many others around the globe.

Rotary International is hopeful that the 27 years and over $1 billion dollars they have used to lead the private sector in this global pursuit will rid the world of this dread disease.  Their PolioPlus program has been recognized as an excellent model of public-private cooperation in pursuit of a humanitarian goal.

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Rotariens Climbing Mount Everest for Polio

By Joe Pratt, past governor of District 7870 (parts of New Hampshire and Vermont, USA)

In October of 2011, my wife and I along with another Rotarian couple traveled to Pakistan to participate in a National Immunization Day (NID). The trip came about because of a Pakistani Group Study Exchange team visit to my Rotary district and the subsequent invitation to visit their country.

Despite the State Department’s warnings against travel to Pakistan as well as an outbreak of dengue fever, we decided that this was a once in a lifetime opportunity. At this point I had been training for my climb on Mount Everest for eight months and it was the consensus of our group, in particular Steve Puderbaugh, that the climb be dedicated to raising funds to help eradicate polio.

When the idea was presented to our Pakistani Rotarian hosts, it was enthusiastically received. Upon our return to the United States, we promoted the goal of US$29,030 which equaled $1 per foot for the height of the mountain, 100 percent of which would go to the polio eradication effort. The idea caught on in the local community, where a significant number of checks were received from non-Rotarians.

My climb began on 10 April in Kathmandu, Nepal, where I joined the Seven Summits Club — a Russian expedition. We then flew to Lhasa, Tibet, to approach Everest from the north side. After five weeks of training and acclimatization on the mountain, we waited for a weather window to make the summit attempt.

That attempt began on 15 May. I reached the top of Everest on 20 May at 9:30 a.m. In my 25 years of climbing experience, this was by far the greatest challenge. I owe my successful summit in great part to the professionalism of the Seven Summits Club and particularly to the skill, strength and tenacity of the Sherpas that supported the expedition. Most of all I am humbled and grateful for the benevolence the mountain showed me.

Since returning to New Hampshire, I have been making presentations to Rotary clubs in my district in order to continue to raise awareness for the polio campaign and to reach the goal of $29,030. For more information, contact me at

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