KATHMANDU: Trekking Agencies Association of Nepal (Taan) and Kathmandu Environmental Education Project (Keep) have joined hands to operate “porter clothing centres” in Kathmandu and Lukla.
The two organisations signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to this effect here on Friday. Taan President Chandra Prasad Rijal and Keep President Bimal Naharki signed the MoU. According to Taan, trekking staff can take warm jackets, trousers and boots from the centres by paying only laundry fee. They will have to return the gear after the trek is completed.
As per the MoU, Keep will look after the management of clothing centres while Taan will pay salaries to staffers and house rent. Taan will hand over the clothing sets from its centre in Lukla to Keep and purchase new clothing sets as required.
Speaking at the programme, Rijal said the operation of the clothing centres will relay a positive message about Nepal to tourist-generating markets. “Our markets will know we are taking proper care of our trekking staff. This will help in tourism promotion,” he said.
The agreement is expected to benefit thousands of trekking staff who need to work in higher altitude but do not have appropriate clothing.
Keep has been operating a clothing centre in Thamel, Kathmandu. Taan Pokhara has been operating a similar centre in the lake city.