Frequently Asked Questions

What is Joyful Ascent: Mt. Kilimanjaro?

Joyful Ascent: Mt. Kilimanjaro is an exciting once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for anyone wanting to help end human trafficking in Canada by fundraising for the Joy Smith Foundation’s Prevention and Intervention programs, while also raising awareness about this issue and participating in a thrilling guided group adventure to the summit of the world’s tallest freestanding mountain. 

The trip happens February 18 to 27, 2024. 

The climb/hike portion of the trip is February 20-26.

Each participant will climb Mt. Kilimanjaro in tribute to a Canadian human trafficking survivor. Victims and survivors of sex trafficking are incredibly strong. They have endured abuse and horrors that many of us cannot even imagine and the fact a person has remained alive shows their resounding strength and resilience.

Joyful Ascent is a symbolic representation of the journey that sex trafficking survivors undertake. Escaping the sex trade is not a one-time event, but rather a difficult and ongoing effort. It is a journey toward safety, freedom, and hope. Joyful Ascent participants will climb in solidarity with survivors every step of the way. Will you join them?

What is the Joy Smith Foundation?

The Joy Smith Foundation is Canada’s leading authority on the prevention and intervention of human trafficking and also provides support for survivors of this horrific crime. It’s a responsibility we take seriously. Over the years, the Joy Smith Foundation has helped over 7,000 human trafficking survivors and their families restore their lives by reuniting, healing and integrating back into their communities.

One of the key focuses of the Joy Smith Foundation is the prevention of human trafficking through improved education and awareness. In 2021, the Foundation launched the National Human Trafficking Education Centre, a nationwide online resource to educate Canadians to prevent this crime from occurring. Learn more about the National Human Trafficking Education Centre.

What is human trafficking?

Human trafficking can be described as modern-day slavery involving the recruitment, transportation, or harbouring of persons for exploitation, typically in the sex trade or through forced labour.

Knowledge is our greatest protection. The more we know and understand about human trafficking, the more we can do to prevent it.

When will Joyful Ascent: Mt. Kilimanjaro occur?

This exciting trip takes place from February 18 to 27, 2024. 

The climb/hike portion of the trip is February 20-26, 2024. 

Where can I learn more about the hike?

Full details and a complete itinerary are available now. 

View Climb Itinerary

View optional Safari/Beach Itinerary

How can I register? 

The Joy Smith Foundation is not organizing this event. All travel and climb arrangements are being conducted by Tourcan Vacations. The Foundation is the beneficiary of funds raised by participants who want to join. 

Please register using the red ‘register’ button at the top of this page first.

Then, make all travel arrangements by contacting or 1-800-263-2995 ext. 2675.

In order to make all the necessary arrangements, please register by Monday, October 2, 2023.

Are there teams for this event?

There are no teams. Each climber/participant is part of the Joyful Ascent team!

What’s involved in Joyful Ascent: Mt. Kilimanjaro?

Participation in Joyful Ascent: Mt. Kilimanjaro requires three elements.

1.) Climbers must be physically able to make the journey up and down the mountain.

2.) Each climber must fund and make arrangements for their own travel, food and accommodation for this adventure (booked through Please be aware that passports must be valid for 6 months beyond the return date and visas are required to enter Tanzania.

3.) Upon registration, each climbers’ goal is to raise a minimum of $10,000 in support of the Joy Smith Foundation’s Prevention and Intervention programs.

Do I need to buy travel insurance?

Participants, whose physical condition so requires, must ensure that they have a sufficient quantity of any required medication with them, and that they carry such medication in their hand baggage at all times. 

Travellers must also consult competent medical authorities prior to departure about preventive medical measure as regards to the countries to be visited. 

Contact Tourcan Vacations for more information.

Who can join Joyful Ascent: Mt. Kilimanjaro?

Anyone 18+ who is able to support and arrange their own trip and raise the required funds for the Joy Smith Foundation is invited to participate.

Can I donate to Joyful Ascent: Mt. Kilimanjaro without participating in the climb?

Yes, donations can be made to individual climbers or directly to the Joy Smith Foundation in support of Joyful Ascent at

To donate to a specific climber, visit the top of this page ( and click on 'donate' to search for the participant who's climb you would like to contribute to.

Are there registration fees for joining Joyful Ascent: Mt. Kilimanjaro?

There are no registration ‘fees’ for Joyful Ascent. 

However, each participant must pay for their own trip and all it entails, as well as make their own travel arrangements with Wendy from Tourcan Vacations and endeavour to raise a minimum of $10,000 to go to the Joy Smith Foundation in order to participate.

How will the raised funds be used?

All funds raised from Joyful Ascent: Mt. Kilimanjaro will go toward the Joy Smith Foundation’s Prevention and Intervention programs. 

By taking part in this fundraising event, you will help support the Foundation’s work to prevent human trafficking from occurring and help survivors heal and rebuild their lives. Participation also provides free educational resources to youth, parents, first responders, educators, community leaders and those working in the justice system through the Foundation’s National Human Trafficking Education Centre.

Thank you for helping to end human trafficking in Canada!

How did this event come about?

One of our long time supporters, David Wilson wanted to make an impact and raise funds for the Joy Smith Foundation. He knew he wanted to make the trek and climb Mt. Kilimanjaro and decided to extend the invitation for others to join him and raise funds as well. We are grateful for all the time and effort David has put into researching and making arrangements to make it easy for others to join him!

“Every step-up Mount Kilimanjaro is a step closer to making a positive impact to stop human trafficking in Canada, “ he says. 

“With each summit, we are not only conquering a mountain but also conquering challenges that stand in the way of progress. So let us climb higher, dream bigger, and reach for the top, knowing that every dollar raised brings us one step closer to a better future for a trafficked survivor.”



How do I find the website address (URL) for my personal fundraising page?

Once you have registered for this event, you will automatically be emailed access to your personal participant center. From there you can invite friends, family and co-workers to sponsor your climb of Mt. Kilimanjaro! 

*If you do not get an email with details after you register, please check your junk or spam folder and put us on your safe sender list to receive future emails about this event and more.

Next, Log in to your account on the website.

Click the "Participant Center" button at the top of the page and then scroll down to the "Personal Page" section.

Here you can find the URL to your personal page to customize and share information from.


How do I edit my personal page?

Log in to your account on this website. 

Click the "Participant Center" button and scroll down to the "Personal Page" section.

You can edit text and add a photo if you'd like!


How do I change my fundraising goal on my personal page?

Log in to your account on this website.

Click the "Participant Center" button at the top of the page.

You will see the "Your Fundraising Progress" section at the top of the page. 

You will see a screen that says 'Overview.' It will show how much you have raised and your fundraising goal. Under your fundraising goal there is the word 'change' in parenthesis. Click the word ‘change’ and it will let you type in a new goal. Then click ‘submit’.

Fundraising Questions


When can I begin fundraising for this event?

Fundraising begins as soon as you register. Once registered and travel arrangements have been made, start fundraising to reach your goal!

How do I Reach Out to Ask People to Participate or Donate?


Take some inspiration from our Donation Request email template to get you started on your email and show others this is a cause you believe in and is worth supporting. 


In-person appeal
Sometimes it takes being in front of someone to really show your passion. 

Talk to people about human trafficking and how it’s happening right here in Canada. Let them know why you are participating in this event and why it’s so important to get people Canada-wide participating, donating and informed about human trafficking.

Phone Call
Pick up the phone and have a heart-to-heart with someone you would like to join you or donate toward your participation. This is a great way to get more people involved. You might find it helpful to keep a list of key points about Joyful Ascent in front of you to reference during your call. We have some phone call notes for you to keep in mind about the event during your conversation with potential donors. 

I have collected cheques and/or cash donations. How do I send them in?

Sending cash through the mail is not advised. 

If you are collecting any offline donations for Joyful Ascent, please keep track of the donor’s personal information on the donation chart. You can download and print the chart from the Climber Resources section of this website. 

Keeping good and complete records of who paid you by cheque and/or cash and how much they contributed ensure that the tax receipt is made out to the donor rather than you. 

All online donations will automatically capture the donor’s information and a tax receipt will be sent to them directly.

If you have collected cash donations, please send a cheque (remember to include Joyful Ascent in the annotation) to:

Joy Smith Foundation

1800-201 Portage Avenue

Winnipeg, MB, Canada

R3B 3K6

How are my cheque and cash donations being recorded?

Upon receipt of cash or cheque donations at our office, we will add them to your fundraising total.


How are tax receipts handled for donations to Joyful Ascent?

Donations of $20 or more are eligible for a tax receipt.



Trip-specific questions:

Please contact Wendy at Tourcan Vacations if you have any specific questions about this trip.

How do I apply for a visa to enter Tanzania?

Visas to enter Tanzania can be obtained online at

What’s the route for the Joyful Ascent: Mt. Kilimanjaro climb?

The Joyful Ascent climb will follow the Lemosho Route, widely considered to be the best route on Mount Kilimanjaro due to its beauty, remoteness and success rate. In short, it maximizes the chances that a climber will reach the summit and enjoy the experience overall.

The Lemosho route heads across the Shira Plateau, before circling along the southern circuit halfway around the mountain, exposing the climber to great views from all angles. The trek begins in the lush rainforests of the Lemosho Glades, climbing towards the Shira Plateau. From here it follows the Southern Flank, Barranco Wall and Barafu Route. 

The route is approximately 70 km/ 42 miles from gate to gate.

Can I spend more time in Tanzania/Africa?

Joyful Ascent is from Feb 18 to 27, 2024View Joyful Ascent Itinerary.

Any activities before or after are not part of the climb itinerary. 

An optional and additional Safari/Beach trip is available. View safari/beach Itinerary.

Please make all travel arrangements by contacting or 1-800-263-2995 ext. 2675.