Elvis (Lelo) Munis
An African youth with the type of vision that is generated only when poignant personal experience collides with extraordinary vantage point. Just as Africa is a continent of contrast, Elvis’s world consists of point and counter-point. Born in the foothills of Mt. Kilimanjaro, Elvis passed a difficult childhood spent between his grandmother’s house, living in a bus, and being essentially homeless. At the age of fifteen, he first climbed Kilimanjaro as a porter to help pay for his school fees. Despite his self-driven academic success (also teaching himself five languages to fluency) he has been struggling ever since to obtain the finances necessary to continue his education.
Elvis is inquisitive by nature and asks hard questions. How can we Africans best counter backwardness with personal development? How can we foster self-empowerment to combat poverty and dependence? From a history of immersion in the local environment, he has spent time guiding wildlife safaris; leading treks up Kilimanjaro; working as a volunteer in several civil societies; solo cycling in 16 African countries (http://cyclingaroundafrica.blogspot.com); leading long distance biking tours (including Tour d Afriques– Cairo to Cape Town trip in 2011), and teaching Ecology to international high school and college students. He has emerged an intelligent and thoughtful naturalist and it is this spirit that drives his current endeavor. Elvis is once again using the power of the bicycle to fight for what he believes in.
Africa and Tanzania is home to a vast variety of bio and cultural diversity. It plays home to a large variety of wildlife, rare ecosystems full of endemic species; is a harbor of pristine nature areas and natural resources. These are World Heritage sights. Sadly, many of its people lack the financial resources as well as inspiration and motivation to receive the education necessary to successfully manage, develop and preserve these resources and their respective areas. In a country stricken with challenges, education is a luxury for most citizens.