Wild Frontiers Foundation Annual Report 2022
Generally, 2022 was another consolidation year for the Wild Frontiers Foundation, allowing us to focus on existing projects, including much-needed additional maintenance and development at the Baleygon Village School in northern Pakistan. While no new projects were undertaken, we launched a major fundraising appeal to help support disaster relief after the devastating flooding that swept across Pakistan in August.
Projects Supported in 2022
- Baleygon Community School, Pakistan
- Disaster Relief, Pakistan Flood Appeal
- Lone Buffalo English School, classroom sponsorship, Laos
- Gondar Girls Football Team, Ethiopia
- Afghanaid – Humanitarian Relief, Afghanistan
- University Scholarship, Pakistan
- Pole Pole Foundation, Democratic Republic of Congo
Funding spend amounted to just over £24,000
Fundraising throughout 2022 came via a number of sources including:
- A new initiative in which a donation was made was to the Foundation on behalf of every person that travelled with Wild Frontiers during the year
- The generosity of Wild Frontiers clients, who made individual donations
- A public disaster relief fundraising appeal for the those effected by the floods in Pakistan
Fundraising amounted to just over £21,700
Baleygon Community School – Pakistan
Our partnership with the Felix Foundation Baltistan, who took over the management of the Wild Frontiers Foundation school in the village of Baleygon, northern Pakistan, entered its third year.
This year presented the first opportunity since the start of the COVID pandemic, for Wild Frontiers Founder and Foundation chairman, Jonny Bealby, to visit Pakistan and access the progress being made at the school.
Jonny’s visit in June highlighted the need for additional funding to make repairs and improvements to the school building. Work that needed attention included repairing and refurbishing a currently disused classroom to make it once again fit for purpose, repainting parts of the school building, repairing washroom facilities and making the entrance to the school, which is located next to a water channel, safer for students and teachers.
In addition to our annual general budget, further funds were allocated for the works, which were carried out and completed by the end of October.
To continue to develop the standard of teaching and learning at the school a teacher training programme was also put in place, along with additional funding to increase teachers’ wages to assist with staff retention and the increase in the cost of living.
Spanning over 10 years, the building and funding of the primary school in the isolated mountain village of Baleygon is the Wild Frontiers Foundation's most significant ongoing project to date.
Recognising the needs of the village and the students, the Wild Frontiers Foundation’s first major project was initiated in 2010 and the school was officially opened to students in 2012.
Becoming increasingly challenging to run the school, the Wild Frontiers Foundation began talks in 2019 with the Felix Foundation Baltistan, a locally based non-profit organisation working for education and development of the people of the Hushe Valley.
With success in running other schools in the valley, the Wild Frontiers Foundation’s board of trustees made the decision to transfer the management of the school to the Felix Foundation. With the blessing of the community, the school management was officially transferred in February 2020.
As guardians of the school, the Wild Frontiers Foundation has committed to funding the school until 2025. This funding will pay teachers’ wages, provide teaching aids and educational materials, along with general maintenance and upkeep.
Together the Wild Frontiers Foundation and Felix Foundation Baltistan will help ensure the future education of the children of Baleygon.
Emergency Flood Appeal, Pakistan
As the news and shocking images started coming out of Pakistan at the end of August, we responded with the launch of an emergency flood appeal to assist with the disaster relief efforts.
‘Pakistan is close to our hearts. The people and the country have given us and our travellers so much over the year’ – Jonny Bealby founder of Wild Frontiers and Chairman of the Wild Frontiers Foundation
The appeal raised in excess of £11,000, the majority of which was distributed through our charity partner, the Aga Khan Foundation and its Network Development agencies.
Disaster Relief Effort, Pakistan. Photos courtesy Aga Khan Foundation and Development Network
Disaster Relief - Aga Khan Foundation
Funds raised supported the emergency relief work of the Aga Khan Foundation and Aga Khan Development Network, on the ground in both north and south Pakistan.
Immediate relief efforts focused on shelter, food and health. In the northern areas of Gilgit-Baltistan and Chitral, where over 6,000 families had been displaced or evacuated, tents and blankets (or temporary accommodation where possible), food packages and medicine supplies were provided.
In the south-eastern province of Sindh, the Aga Khan Development Network leveraged its health infrastructure and capacity to establish mobile medical camps, to provide emergency medicine and treatments in AKDN facilities, while supporting government hospitals with human resources and training.
Disaster Relief - Kalash Community
Funding was also allocated to help the Kalash, a minority pagan community and friends of Wild Frontiers for almost 25 years, to repair and rebuild water channels, which were damaged during the heavy rains in the Kalash Valleys.
Through the generosity of those that donated to the appeal, we were pleased to be able to provide much-needed support across the country.
Class Sponsorship - Lone Buffalo English School, Laos
The Wild Frontiers Foundation continued to support the class sponsorship programme at the Lone Buffalo English School and Youth Development Centre in northern Laos, marking the 8th year of our partnership. Co-founded by Wild Frontiers tour leader, Mark Steadman, the school nurtures the schooling of students from the rural communities around Phonsavan from beginners' level through to gaining their high school certificate, and providing every opportunity to move on to higher education.
Gondar Girls’ Football Team – Ethiopia
The Wild Frontiers Foundation continued to support the Gondar Girls’ Football Team, an initiative that was first kicked off with charity partner, Together We Learn Ethiopia, in 2020.
The initiative, in the northern town of Gondar, aims to develop the girls’ football skills while promoting gender equality, self-confidence, fun and fitness. The programme also runs regular information sessions for the girls on puberty and health.
The twice weekly training sessions also provide a meal for the team to enjoy together. This year the meals were prepared by the mother of one of the team members, which also provided a regular source of income for the family.
Since the start of our involvement, 43 girls from low-income backgrounds have participated in the project.
‘[Since I joined the team] I developed confidence to speak with my friends and my coach. I feel confident both at school and at home, but at the beginning I was shy in both. My physical fitness is also improved. Though I am thin I am strong and healthy’ - Adina, member of the girls’ football team
Afghanaid – Humanitarian Relief
With the world’s attention less focused on the continuing humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan, the foundation continued to support our charitable partner, Afghanaid, in their efforts to reach families in need. Our donation enabled Afghanaid to provide food for 20 families for four months.
‘Thank you so much to all of the staff at Wild Frontiers and the Wild Frontiers foundation for your kindness at this time, we are so grateful to have you as partners and that at this challenging time, you are helping us to ensure that we do not forget Afghanistan’ – Kate Arthur, Afghanaid
The Foundation also supported Afghanaid with a match funding grant as a part of the Big Give Christmas campaign.
University Scholarship – Pakistan
The Wild Frontiers Foundation funded the first year of a university scholarship programme for a student from the Kalash, a minority pagan community in the Kalash Valleys of northern Pakistan. The student’s aim is to complete a degree in hospitality and tourism, using skills developed to support community tourism within the remote region.
Pole Pole Foundation – Democratic Republic of Congo
A donation received from a Wild Frontiers client, who wished to support the work of our partner the Pole Pole Foundation in the Democratic Republic of Congo, funded a student scholarship programme, encouraging students who had been receiving extra tuition to continue their education.
In 2023 the Wild Frontiers Foundation has committed to the continued support of:
- The Baleygon Village Community School, Pakistan
- The Lone Buffalo English School, classroom sponsorship, Laos
- The Gondar Girls Football Team, Ethiopia
- The University Scholarship Programme, Pakistan