The MCSA has an ongoing programme of outreach into formerly disadvantaged communities to enable these young people to experience the wonders of the mountains and nature.
Access to wild areas has historically been an issue for the disadvantaged in South Africa, and we make full use of the club’s various properties as well as government-managed reserves and private land to ensure our groups get to experience the freedom of the outdoors, whether for recreation or for serious sport.
The aim of the programme is to create a community of mountain lovers and independent hikers, and to identify those individuals and groups who want to take up mountaineering and/or climbing as a sport or an occupation.
Our activities are hosted by about 50 volunteers from the club across 9 provinces. We have around 500 beneficiaries annually taking part in our hiking, climbing, conservation and training activities and they range in age from about 4 to 37 years old.
We teach basic hiking and climbing skills, outdoor leadership, first aid, conservation, fauna and flora identification and custodianship during our activities.
Some of our participants have gone on to become guides and created hiking clubs in their communities, while others have remained in the programme as volunteers.
The programme is supported through funding from national and local governments, as well as donations from members and other individuals.