CAS Camp to Kenya - Kenya
This is a trip and programme that will be specifically tailored for use as part of the the Creativity, Activity & Service (CAS) element of the International Baccaluareate (IB) educational programme.
In partnership with educational providers we have experience in putting together overseas ventures that have a proven track record for delivering elements required by the IB and CAS schemes. We will work with your institution's CAS coordinator to put together a programme and itinerary to meet the needs and aspirations of your students.
Join Adventure Alternative and the Moving Mountains Trust for a three week trip of a lifetime across Kenya, working on relevant, meaningful and hands-on projects developed by our charity in Kenya, Moving Mountains. Aside from the project work you will be helping to run a camp with children who benefit directly from our work in Kenya. After the camp we climb to Point Lenana, Africa’s second highest trekking peak on Mount Kenya (4,985m/16,355ft) as well as finishing the expedition with a safari to experience some of Kenya’s diverse culture and abundant wildlife.
All participants will be involved in variations of community service and the whole expedition is designed to fulfil the creativity, action and service requirements of the IB and to develop your awareness and appreciation of life outside your normal environment. We believe you will return home with a true appreciation for life in Kenya and with a great insight into how we believe developmental aid should work.
Adventure Alternative is an established adventure travel company, which also runs a number of NGOs in developing countries, and offers professional and safe school trips which combine adventure and community action. They promote personal development training, cultural exchange, civic engagement, and community service. Every trip runs in conjunction with a long term development project focussing on social welfare, education, health, construction or tree planting.
Our programmes complement the IB Diploma through the CAS requirement and can be tailored to suit the school needs and the budget. Destinations for 14 – 18 year olds are Kenya (Africamp), Nepal (HimalayaCamp) and Malaysia (BorneoCamp). We pride ourselves on not out-sourcing; we have a large resource of full-time staff, vehicles and equipment in all our regional offices and a secure online group expedition forum.
As with all of our youth and development trips we strive to ensure that participants take an active role in the build up and pre-departure details of the trip, actively engage during their time away and come home with a wealth of new experiences that they then reflect on in the short and long term to consolidate and enhance the positive outcomes.
In this way, the time spent abroad forms perhaps a peak in the experience but that it fits into a larger and more subtle picture of a sustained and balanced journey through stages of creative, intellectual, physical and emotional challenges. Our experience has shown this to greatly enhance the participant's personal appreciation of themselves in the world at large and to build the perspective and confidence that this fosters.
Adventure Alternative have fully trained and experienced UK and Kenyan staff in place to ensure that you will always have the backup and support that you need. We will organise the logistical aspects of your trip and assist you in all aspects of your experience. However we will also be careful to give you the degree of freedom and responsibility which is essential to your development and to allow you to get the most out of your involvement.
Dates and Itinerary
We run scheduled dates that are designed to tie in efficiently with the academic calendar. However the timings of vacations does vary across the different institutions. If you have specific preferred dates that are not currently catered for please contact us to discuss arranging a suitable schedule.
Day 1: ARRIVE IN KENYA
Arrive in Nairobi, where you will be met by a team from Adventure Alternative Kenya and Moving Mountains Kenya who will remain with you throughout the entire trip. Overnight and meeting the staff, briefing and trip preparation.
Day 2: TRANSFER TO PROJECT
Morning drive in one of Adventure Alternative’s converted overland trucks (which will also remain with the team for the duration of the trip) to your project where we will set up camp on location, meet all staff and children at the school as well as the relevant committee members and of course the kids who will be joining you for the camp.
Days 3 - 10: CAMP and PROJECT
We will arrange in advance for a group of the most deserving children from the school/project to join us camping, they will immerse themselves in everything that the team are involved with and are selected on their individual backgrounds and their performance over the previous year so you will soon realise that you are not only providing the tools to improve their education but also encouragement to all the children from the school or project to do their best throughout the year.
Activities during the camps will include camping, cooking, organising games, camp fires in the evening, day visits to local tourist attractions, visits to the other schools and projects supported by Moving Mountains in the area, home visits to experience the daily lives of the children you are camping with and educational/health classes with the kids. There will also be competitions and we’ll try to involve all the kids at the school as much as possible.
Aside from the camp there will be the renovation/building project which will depend on the particular area you are in and will involve working alongside our Moving Mountains Work Team (a group of former street children who are now fully trained in a range of skills and employed by Moving Mountains to work and develop all our projects in Kenya) in a real hands-on and hard work experience. The project could anything from building schools in Solio or Nairobi to renovating the Rescue Centre in Embu or agricultural development in Western Keny.
Our hope is that the trip will show you a new world and give you the chance to make a real difference by working with children from some of the harshest and poorest backgrounds. Perhaps for the first time, you will come face to face with poverty and witness first hand how hard people work just to get by but you will also see how people are so happy and friendly - it's a humbling and wonderful experience to help run a camp and work on a Moving Mountains project in a part of Kenya that truly needs the support and of course to see first hand what it means to really tackle aid in Africa.
Days 11 - 16: MOUNT KENYA
Mt. Kenya is an ancient volcano, much older than Mount Kilimanjaro and the plug which remains has been eroded into the complex jagged outline of central peaks which is visible today. From a distance it dominates the surrounding slopes and valleys. Elephant, black rhino, buffalo, colobus monkey, and many species of antelope and giant forest hog can be seen in the foothills of the 228 sq. mile National Park.
There are three main routes up Mt Kenya; Sirimon, Chogoria and the Naro Moru route; each one starts off in impressive rainforest in the lower reaches, featuring abundant wildlife and beautiful alpine scenery higher up. The forest gradually turns into moorland covered with giant heather before becoming sparser, with giant lobelia and groundsels dotted around.
The final camp is based at the start of the summit circuit on a lava plateau and will be our final stop before attempting to summit for sunrise early on the morning of day 15. After summiting we can either come down a different route or return the same way that we ascended dropping all the way down to about 3,000m for our final night on the mountain.
This part of the trip will start off with a preparation day in Naro Moru and Nanyuki where we will meet our Guides and Porters, check equipment and sort out final logistics before starting the five day/four night climb on day 12. Accommodation throughout the climb will be in mountain tents.
We will be off the mountain for lunch on day 16 which will give everyone an afternoon to relax, get a well deserved shower and sort out their kit before the safari. We’ll have a bit of a celebration party in the evening with our Guides and Porters who will prepare a special meal for the whole team at one of the homes of the Guides.
Days 17 - 20: SAFARI
Early start on day 17 to reach National Park/Game Reserves in good time, there are a couple of options for the safari and all are great areas to visit for very different reasons. With groups we generally like to use Naivasha and Nakuru as there are plenty of opportunities for other activities and with Nakuru being such a compact Park it allows you to see an abundance of wildlife over a shorter time frame but we are very happy to work with preferences, if you want complete wilderness away from the tourist trail then Meru or even Samburu are good options but if your priority is to see as much wildlife as possible then the Masai Mara is the place to be, particularly during the Great Migration.
Lake Nakuru/Lake Naivasha and Hells Gate give you the opportunity to experience more than one National Park with a combination of activities and it is close to Nairobi so we can get two nights camping on the shores of Lake Naivasha and a night inside Nakuru National Park. We’ll also be able to take boats out on to Lake Naivasha to see the wallowing Hippo and, if you are interested, a visit to Elsamere, the former home of the late Joy Adamson who, together with her husband George, became world famous for their pioneering conservation work and relationship with the lioness Elsa (Born Free). There are also some great walks around the lake, we can arrange for some games and swimming at the campsite and there are options to cycle through Hells Gate.
Samburu Game Reserve would give us two nights camping inside the Reserve and a further third night back in Naro Moru before returning to Nairobi on day 20. Samburu Reserve is an arid, hilly region with riverine forests, acacia woodland and scrubland, offering a dramatic and rugged landscape in a rather remote location of Kenya - which is precisely the attraction of this reserve - fewer tourists in a wildlife rich, desert like setting. We’ll also be able to visit and learn about the local Samburu people and their way of life.
Meru National Park would again give us two nights camping inside the National Park and a further third night back in Naro Moru before returning to Nairobi on day 20. Meru is even less frequented than Samburu and although it has a higher scenic value to Samburu the bush landscape make spotting wildlife a little more difficult. However, with seven rivers flowing through the Park there will always be an abundance of watering holes where you will see plenty of wildlife, including the black rhino, crocodile and plenty of elephant.
Masai Mara would more than likely involve a night on day 17 on the shores of Lake Naivasha where we can do the boat trip out on to the lake before getting to the Mara on day 18 for two nights camping, returning to Nairobi in the morning of day 20. Masai Mara needs no introduction and although will be by far the busiest with tourists flocking to the region all year round, it is also the park which gives the best chance of seeing the widest variety of wildlife.
All offer something a little different and the National Parks/Reserves which you will visit depend on both the time of the year and personal preferences. We’ll be back in Nairobi late afternoon on day 20 for a celebration/farewell meal/party before departing Kenya on day 21. We can either arrange for a party at our Guest House and have a bit of a traditional night which will give your team the chance to meet all the staff who have come through the charity and are now employed with Adventure Alternative as well as some of the children that are currently supported in the Nairobi area or we can take the team and the staff that have been with you throughout the trip to somewhere like the ‘Carnivore’ restaurant where you can enjoy a bit of final luxury in one of Nairobi’s best restaurants.
Day 21: NAIROBI
Depart Nairobi at anytime in the day
CAS Camp to Kenya cost: £1,270.00
- Organisation of all the logistics on the ground
- all the back up
- vehicles and transport
- staff for the expedition
- entry of tourist attractions visited
- National Park and camping fees
- all meals
- all food/water
- International flights
- visa (currently $25 or £20)
- personal travel insurance
- vaccinations and anti-malarials
- Personal spending money
£100 from your trip cost will go to Moving Mountains which covers the cost of the project. Adventure Alternative also underwrites all the administration costs of Moving Mountains to ensure that every penny donated goes directly to the countries in which we are working.
You do not need to be super-fit for this trip, however the expedition element is moderately demanding with some long days of sustained walking with a backpack. The effects of altitude will also further tax your body. You will enjoy the trip all the more if you are in good physical shape having exercised regularly and eaten nutritiously over at least the 6 months leading up to the trip.
You do need to be in good health as we will spend some time in locations that are many hours from professional medical care. Any pre-existing medical or dental conditions should be fully appraised by a doctor and their nature fully disclosed to your insurer and to ourselves.
- Rucksack, 65-90 litres (check airline for weight allowance, you may be allowed two bags)
- Small day pack, approx 20-25 litres (hand luggage for flight)
- Sleeping Bag (3 season is ideal)
- Sleeping Mat/Therm-A-Rest
- Wash kit and travel towel
- Personal First Aid Kit - insect repellent, sun cream & lypsyl (high UVA protection), paracetamol, malaria tablets, prescribed medicines, germolene, vitamin tablets, immodium, bonijel, plasters, etc
- Sun glasses with good UV protection
- Money belt - to conceal cash, passports, etc
- Camera - plus charger
- Mobile phone - plus charger - an old model which is unlocked
- Head torch - LED are best
- 2 x 1 litre water bottles
- Loose fitting and comfortable clothes - T-shirts, shorts, trousers or long skirt, sunhat/baseball cap, shirts/long sleeved t-shirts, swimwear, socks, underwear etc
- MOUNTAIN EXTRAS;
- Waterproof jacket and trousers
- Gaiters (optional)
- Warm Fleece
- Hiking shirt/mid layer fleece
- Mountain/Ski gloves
- Warm hat & glove liners
- 2/3 pairs hiking socks
- Hiking/trekking boots
- Documentation & Misc;
- Passport (& photocopy), money, books, spare laces, spare batteries for electrics, small padlocks, local language phrasebook (optional), country guide book (optional), notebook & pens, copy of insurance & student card
Additional Kit Info
- Make sure hiking boots are leather (fabric boots should have a waterproof lining) and broken in.
- A sleeping bag is only as good as your rollmat. Make sure it's a thick closed cell mat. A sleeping bag liner made out of cotton is useful too and helps to keep the bag clean or can be slept in if it gets too hot. Make your own sleeping bag liner if you want from an old sheet sewn into a mummy shape. Don't make it too tight around you.
- You will be able to wash clothes - handwash in washing powder, that is. The problem is trying to dry things so you may only have the opportunity to wash smalls. On the mountain there is no real opportunity to wash clothes at all.
- Carry OLD CLOTHES to wear for the project and camp, they will get very dirty, and covered in paint quite possibly. You need travel clothes which are clean for the travelling home bit, and for safari & coast, but on the camp and project it will be pretty dirty. A lot of people just leave stuff behind because it’s not worth taking home!
- Choose your clothing based on usefulness and durability, not for fashion statements. Some clothes you may want to give away or swap at the end for souvenirs.
- If you wear contact lenses take plenty of saline and comfort drops- it can get dusty.
- Mosquito nets are optional. The tents have inbuilt nets and people in the past have generally not had a big problem with insects.
- Do not bring porcelain plates - bring plastic and a few spare spoons - they always go missing.
- Girls will have to dress conservatively in shanty towns and in public. You will draw unnecessary attention to yourself and maybe cause offence if revealing clothing is worn.
- Keep your money somewhere safe in a bumbag. Do not bring large wads of notes with you. If you take sterling cash with you make sure they are Bank of England notes, not regional notes, eg Northern Irish notes or Scottish notes.
- For the mountain, work on a layering system which gives you versatility - Tshirt or thermals, shirt or warm top, fleece, waterproofs. Gloves and hats are vital - remember spare socks can double as mitts in emergencies.
- For camera buffs, take 200 ASA film for general use, both slides and prints. A fast film of about 1000 ASA is good for dawn on Mt. Kenya and perhaps a 100 ASA for the sunny coast.
- At the coast, snorkelling gear will be provided.
You can rent equipment in Nairobi directly from Kelly Kioko or in Naro Moru from our guides. We do have some equipment in our Nairobi store, and there are a couple rental shops in Naro Moru town and neighbouring Nanyuki town which can provide you with all the main items needed to climb Mt Kenya. Prices vary, and our local team can help you bargain and purhase what you require.
- We do not contract out our trips, we employ full time staff, offering job security and good benefits, and we are continually improving our quality service year on year.
- We are passionate about responsible tourism and our company supports sustainable development in Kenya in a real way.
- Adventure Alternative underwrites the charity Moving Mountains.
- Financial security guaranteed as we are AITO bonded.
- We are members on Interhealth which gives you access to pre-trip health information and on-site assistance by phone in the event of an emergency.
- Our staff only work for Adventure Alternative.
- All our guides and safari staff are professionally trained and have years of proven experience.
- We are registered with KATO and use the AMREF tourist evacuation scheme with the Kenya Flying Doctors