The inspirational story of 17000 ft Foundation
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Our Story

Frequent treks in the high mountains of Ladakh made the Founders aware of just how challenging life in remote Ladakh was. Remarkably, every village had a tiny functioning Government school, irrespective of the number of children in it. However, what distressed them the most was the minimal infrastructure in many of these schools. Not enough classrooms, no furniture to sit on, no playgrounds or even learning resources. They saw children everywhere going to school, even in -15 degC winters sitting on cold bare floors. The teachers were struggling to impart quality education to the students within the available resources.


The Founding team, along with volunteers, then drove long distances, camped in tents or stayed in homestays and even trekked treacherous mountain passes where necessary, to reach remote villages, just to understand the aspirations of the people, the challenges they faced and most importantly, the state of education delivery in the schools. Their survey of villages revealed the desperation of young parents for a good education for their children, a desperation that drove them to send their very young children alone to faraway towns to be enrolled in private schools, often dependent on the support of extended family or even complete strangers.

The desperation of the villagers for better education for their children, inspired the Sahus - to start a non-profit focussing on quality education to children near their homes in the remotest part of this country. They were joined by their long-time friend Dawa Jora, a Ladakhi businessman who was already involved in many charitable activities in remote areas.

Today the foundation works in 350+ schools across Ladakh and Sikkim. Hundreds of schools have a 17000 ft Library, Playground and classroom furniture. The foundation has pioneered an off-grid and off-network solar powered Ed-tech solution - The DigiLab which is installed in 200+ schools. The tablets from the DigiLab, enabled continued learning during the pandemic. A strong, dedicated team at Leh, Kargil and Gangtok is working round the clock to transform the schools into colourful, interesting learning spaces in the remote areas of the Indian Himalayan Region.


Why the name 17000ft?

17000 ft is the highest our team has crossed on foot and the furthest we have travelled to reach our remotest beneficiary - A school in remote Ladakh which remains cut off from civilization for 6 months of a year due to harsh winters. 


  • 2012
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  • 2022