Farzin Fallah climbed Cho-Oyu in early Fall of 2016. Cho-Oyu is the 6th highest mountain in the world and stands at 8,201 m (26,906 ft.) in elevation. It is located on the border of Nepal and Tibet, a short distance from Mt. Everest.
Farzin has a son with Asperger’s Syndrome, and decided to turn his love for climbing into a fundraising project. Farzin Fallah’s goal was to raise awareness and funds to help fund San Diego based nonprofit organizations that are dedicated to helping individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) develop technical and social skills to gain the employment and become independent, contributing members of society. Farzin’s wife, Leesa, joined the fundraising efforts and was essential to its success.
PACT was fortunate to receive some of the funds raised through this project. On January 21, 2016, Farzin’s son, Matthew, who participates in PACT programs, presented Kathryn Campion, PACT Founding Director, with a check for $2,064.
Thank you Farzin, Leesa, and Matthew!
You can learn more about Farzin’s climb on their website: climbingforautism.org.
Mountaineer and dad Farzin Fallah will be facing one of the biggest challenges of his life in just a few weeks. He will embark on a climbing expedition in Nepal starting August 30 to raise funds for autism organizations, including PACT. As many of you know, Farzin’s son Matthew is a long-time participant in our theatre and performing arts workshops. We are honored and grateful to Farzin for turning his climb of Cho-Oyu, the world’s sixth highest mountain, into a challenge that will benefit many in the autism community, including our own theatre participants.
While summer is a time when many people step back and relax with vacations or trips to the beach, both Farzin and his son Matthew have made the most of their summer working toward their goals. In July, while Matthew participated in a pre-college program in Seattle, Farzin used the opportunity to climb two of Washington’s magnificent mountains that were within driving distance of Seattle, where the family was staying. They were Mount Si and Colchuck Peak. With the challenge of climbing Nepal’s Cho-Oyu rapidly approaching, Farzin welcomed the opportunity to continue preparing in Washington for the climb.
To read Farzin’s account of his most recent climbs in Washington State and see more pictures of the breathtaking scenery they offered, visit his blog at climbingforautism.org.
And if you haven’t already done so, please consider making a contribution to this very worthwhile endeavor. Donations can be made through a link to the National Association for Autism Research (NFAR) which you’ll find on Farzin’s website: Climbing for Autism.
We wish Farzin all the best in his climbing expedition in Nepal! You’ll find updates and photos of Farzin’s amazing journey and his summiting of Cho-Oyu on his websites’s blog as well.
Most parents of children with Autism will go to any heights to help them reach their full potential. Farzin Fallah will be doing that literally when he sets out to climb Cho-Oyu, the world’s sixth highest mountain located on the border of Nepal and Tibet on August 30.
Farzin is the father of a teen who has been participating in our theatre workshops for about two years. An avid climber and mountaineer, Farzin is combining his dedication to helping his son with Asperger’s with his love for climbing in a fundraising project that he started called Climbing for Autism.
Funds raised will support programs that serve those with autism in our area. All funds will go to the National Foundation for Autism (NFAR) and then be distributed to local non-profits. PACT will receive 10% of all funds raised on this climb.
You can donate to the project through the National Foundation for Autism. Check out the Climbing for Autism website to learn more about the project. Your can also read Farzin’s blog posts on our site to learn how he has been preparing for this extraordinary challenge.
Positive Action Community Theatre (PACT)
PACT is a 501(c) non-profit organization.
Second in a series of posts by San Diego resident Farzin Fallah chronicling his preparation and training for climbing Nepal’s Cho Oyu Mountain in Fall 2016 to raise funds for Autism awareness. Farzin is the father of a teenager with Asperger’s, and PACT will be one of the beneficiaries of this project.
Preparing for Next Year in Nepal
As preparation for my Cho Oyu climb in Nepal next year, I spent 3 weeks in the Cordillera Real mountain range in Bolivia during May. Cordillera Real is part of the Andes chain of mountains and contains beautiful 5,000-6,000 meter (18,000 to 21,000 feet) peaks. The main objective of this trip was to climb Illiampu, a 21,000-foot peak, which is the most difficult mountain to climb in Bolivia.
I began the trip by acclimatizing with a small 17,500 feet peak that was then followed by Condoriri at 18,500 feet. Condoriri is one of the most beautiful peaks in the world. After a rest day in La Paz, my guide and I set off on a 5-day expedition to summit Illiampu. Although the weather was not typical for that time of the year, we were still able to successfully summit Illiampu. As a bonus, I had time to attempt the west face to Potosi; at 20,000 feet, it is the largest ice face in Bolivia. Unfortunately, due to poor unconsolidated snow conditions, we had to retreat to base camp.
Presently, I am continuing my training and preparation for Cho Oyu. This October I will participate in the Seal Fit Kokoro Challenge in North County. It’s the civilian version of the Navy Seal’s Hell Week!
First in a series of posts by San Diego resident Farzin Fallah chronicling his preparation and training for climbing Nepal’s Cho Oyu Mountain in Fall 2016 to raise funds for Autism awareness. Farzin is the father of a teenager with Asperger’s, and PACT will be one of the beneficiaries of this project.
My son, Matthew, was diagnosed with ASD at the age of 2. From that point on his life was a major struggle to “catch up” and learn what is basically instinctual for neuro-typical kids. He struggled to learn how to speak in sentences, keep his balance, walk on grass, eat foods of different textures, and a myriad of other activities that require no thought for a typical child. The struggles continued as he grew, and the complexity of human interactions became one of the biggest challenges in his life. He began the process of learning the nuances of human relationships that we take for granted: keeping a proper distance when speaking with someone, looking them in the eye, listening without interrupting, etc. He has even had to learn about a sense of humor. His struggle continues and will continue.
Matthew has been an extremely hardworking individual and has faced his challenges head on. It has been an inspiration to see him overcome so many of these challenges and grow. However, he has not done this alone. Asides from his mom’s sacrifices and dedication, there has been a community of people helping him. Without their significant support, Matthew would not be making such great strides.
I have been a climber and mountaineer for over 28 years. Although it is a challenging endeavor, I love climbing because it provides me with a path towards personal growth. However, compared to Matthew’s, and other people on the spectrum’s struggles, climbing is more like a walk in the park. This is why I have decided to use mountaineering as platform to raise funds and awareness of autism.
I will attempt to climb Cho Oyu, the sixth highest mountain in the world, in the Fall of 2016. Cho Oyu stands at an elevation of 8,201 m (26,906 ft.) on the border of Nepal and Tibet, a short distance from Mt. Everest. I will pay for all expedition costs. All funds raised will be donated to a small number of advocacy and support organizations such as PACT.