A Winnipeg teacher has been training seven hours a day to prepare for the top of the world — and hoping to give a lift to Manitobans with developmental disabilities.
Dalip Shekhawat, a special education teacher at St. Amant School, will set out in April to climb Everest, Earth’s highest mountain above sea level.
The 49-year-old has climbed more than 15 other mountains, but never anything as challenging as Everest. This time, though, he has extra incentive.
He has been gathering pledges for his climb, with the money going to the St. Amant Foundation. The foundation funds programs at the St. Amant Centre — a non-profit organization that provides resources for Manitobans with developmental disabilities and autism.
Every day I see the difference we make in these individuals’ lives we support.– Dalip Shekhawat
The school is operated by the centre.
“Every day I see the difference we make in these individuals’ lives we support. And these individuals deserve a better life,” Shekhawat said.
“All the funds we raise will be used to give them access to recreational and leisure resources.”
Waving the flags
He also intends to take some of his work with him. He’ll be carrying a St. Amant flag, which he will wave when he reaches the 8,848-metre peak.
He’ll also be carrying a flag for the Royal Winnipeg Rifles, a reserve infantry regiment of the Canadian Forces, of which he is a member.
“This will be my shout-out to those two great organizations,” Shekhawat said.
His journey will start in the first week of April. He’ll trek five to six hours a day and estimates it will take 50-60 days to finish the trip.