These are early days for the Kimi Worrell Foundation, we’re working to make Rock Climbing Safer for all in New Zealand.  Founded shortly after the death of Lauren Kimiyo Worrell in August 2018, the board, consisting of friends and family is volunteering their time to build the framework for a national effort to improve rock climbing safety across the country.

We are currently in communication with members of the climbing community here in New Zealand and we are gaining insights almost daily. Interested parties are welcomed to get in contact with us by email. In the mid-term we hope that volunteers will join in to make our sport safer for everyone who enjoys climbing in the outdoors.
Kimi used a piece of fixed equipment, bolted to a rock, that virtually every climber used to reach the exfil point of an established climbing route. Use of more robust components or routine replacement would have saved her life. With the aid of monies raised, technology, and the eyes of many who enjoy the sport, we aim to minimize the possibility that another person’s life ends too early.

"The family ask climbers to consider very carefully their reliance on equipment left permanently fixed to rock faces, and the condition of this equipment. This equipment will naturally be affected by UV rays and other elements of nature effecting its condition and reliability."


Lauren Kimiyo Worrell was a 28 year old American living in Auckland. She was an avid outdoors enthusiast and rockclimber. Kimi passed away at Castle Rock in the Coromandel on the 19th of August in an accident that caused her to fall 120m to the forest floor when a fixed climbing hook broke away from the rock face.

Our Mission

  • We will attempt to collect and organize data regarding the condition of existing climbing sites, including developing an online database to catalogue installed hardware, including installation and inspection dates.
  • We are also working to develop a mobile application that climbers can use to document deficiencies and submit questions and informational queries, including submission of photos with GPS coordinates for further review.
  • We will collaborate with the community to promote a culture of safe climbing through climber education.
  • We will provide grants to individuals and clubs/organisations that wish to maintain or upgrade climbing sites.
  • We will work to maintain safe access to climbing sites across New Zealand when called upon through increased focus on safer route design and material selection and by engaging with the parties responsible for managing the land on which climbing sites reside.

In the coming months, several of our board members will be reaching out to rock climbing organasations in other countries to gather information of the climbing best practices. We hope to become a focal point that NZ climbers can use as a reference desk.


Thank you to all who have donated so far; your level of support has been astounding.

Donate here

We started raising funds through Givealittle, however we are now able to take donations directly here.

Organisations and Companies wishing to donate larger sums should contact the foundation directly since Givealittle fees become substantial.
This is the Give a Little Campaign link:
https://givealittle.co.nz/cause/kimis-legacy-fund
Several climbing gym fundraisers have also taken place. Thank you too to those who were able to attend the Everest In A Day fundraiser at Extreme Edge gym last week. We raised around $1400 NZD on the day and climbed a total of 36,412 metres (119,462 ft) – that’s four times the height of Everest!

Contact us for support, media, or general inquiries.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.