Established in 1821, the Chamonix Guides Company gathers over 150 certified mountain guides and leaders. They provide mountain guiding service through the Mont Blanc massif and throughout the world. Famous, talented guides have been members of the “Compagnie”. Today, young talented guides join the organization each year during the traditionnal August 15th Guides’Festival.
It was originally created as a fund raising event for the Emergency Fund, a financial reserve made to help members of the Compagnie des Guides in financial needs, due to injuries or after the loss of a family member. Each year, hundreds of volunteers, guides, leaders, friends and relatives, kindly give some of their time and energy to organize the Festival (entirely managed by guides from the Chamonix Guides’ Company) and raise funds during festivities. Established in 1924, the Emergency Fund also receives donations. In addition, benefits from sales of Compagnie des Guides’ items and other events contribute to financing the Fund.
During the Festival, guides from the Compagnie des Guides celebrate the relationship that exists between themselves, their clients, and the local population. This unique sense of brotherhood is tied somehow stronger than the rope connecting party members. The program of festivities revolves around friendship through extremely convivial encounterings between local business owners, guides and visitors.