August 11, 2017: The Nepal Fire Truck Expedition launched a crowdfunding campaign today with a goal to raise $200,000 that will be used to ship the fire trucks and finance the expedition, as well for creating a compelling feature-length documentary about the expedition as it makes its way through Nepal.
International celebrities, diplomats and adventurers are joining forces to drive ten fire engines across the Himalayas to Kathmandu and donate them to the local fire department, which serves 5 million people with only 3 fire trucks. The publicity generated through this unique event will boost Nepal’s tourism industry.
Famous names from Bolywood such as Manisha Koirala, Rajesh Hamal and Sunil Thapa, are joining international actors like actors Malcolm McDowell, Michael Imperioli and Scott Glenn. Music stars Nuno Bettencourt, from the rock band Extreme, and Chris Adler from Lamb of God, as well as the famous mountaineer Reinhold Messner are amongst those who will also drive the fire trucks over treacherous roads from Birgunj to Kathmandu. The official expedition website contains promotional videos featuring the stars who are conveying their excitement of coming to Nepal.
The expedition is expected to have an enormous worldwide outreach through social media. The adventure will also be filmed by a camera team who will produce two sets of content: two one-hour-long episodes for PBS in the U.S., as well as a 90-minute feature film. The programmes are meant to inspire people to visit Nepal.
The expedition will be led by the former U.S. Ambassador to Nepal, Ambassador Scott DeLisi and the legendary mountaineer and television personality Russell Brice. It is a project that has been seven years in the making and originally included the late actor James Gandolfini, star of the hit-television series The Sopranos. Although the expedition team faced delays after the two devastating earthquakes that hit Nepal in 2015 and the border blockade, the patience and persistence has paid off as numerous other international celebrities and adventurers have decided to join the expedition. The crowdfunding campaign is the last stepping stone before the expedition can finally take off.
By participating in the crowdfunding campaign, backers will not only support the expedition but also Nepal’s local economy. It includes luxury fashion and travel accessories that are handmade in Nepal by young women who were victims or were at risk of human trafficking. Backers can choose from a range of rewards, starting from the official expedition mug and an exclusive access to the documentary film, to high-end items such as uniquely designed travel wallets, handwoven cashmere hats and the official expedition watch.