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Emma Cornthwaite

Expedition Leader

Emma always worked in the charity and third sector until she decided in January to ‘go freelance’ in order to say yes more to the things that she loves doing.

She is now an internationally qualified Massage Therapist, Expedition Leader, Festival Organiser, Vintage Hair Stylist, Fundraising and CSR Consultant, Wilderness First Aider, Web Developer, Singer, Expedition Support Crew and Writer!

When she is not off on adventures, Emma is based in central London where she lives on a pretty gorgeous houseboat with her endurance athlete adventurer husband.

Emma first trained as a nurse with the view of working in developing countries where the help was needed most; then went back to university and got a degree in International Relations and Development.

Emma moved to Sierra Leone in 2013, where she ended up working for an international NGO working with out-of-school children, managing an international volunteering programme and organising the Sierra Leone Marathon each year. She lived and worked in Sierra Leone during the first 6 months of the Ebola epidemic and has a passion for disaster relief and development work.

Emma has led expeditions in Borneo, Kenya, Sierra Leone, Liberia, Bali, Iceland, Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands. She also works as support crew for endurance adventurers.


What was your first adventure?

Does travelling through Europe on a Eurorail ticket for 3 months when I was 17 count?!

If not, when I went to Kenya to research my thesis first hand – I wanted to know if charitable organisations did more harm than good on a grassroots level, so I found a local NGO and volunteered with them for a couple of months.

I made the best friends of my life there – they initiated me into their tribe and gave me my name ‘Karembo’.

What has been your most memorable adventure?

My recent 1008 mile tandem cycle ride from Western Germany to Budapest along the Danube River with adventurer Dave Cornthwaite – once we crossed the 1000 mile mark, he asked me to be his wife!

What item of travel kit you can't do without?

That’s a toughie… sunnies and my camera for those unmissable moments.

What three bits of advice would you give to people who are keen on adventures, trekking and climbing?

  1. Wear in your new boots! The worst thing is wearing brand new boots on a trek and not getting on with them.
  2. Pack your patience and positive attitude 🙂 a climb or trek can really help you find some if you forget to bring it with you.
  3. Go for it! Test yourself, stretch your boundaries and realise they weren’t even there in the first place.

What is the best thing about your job?

The people. You don’t get bad customers when you all share the same passion for adventure and exploration of exciting new lands.

Whether its the people I am leading, the support crew in the office, the local team on the ground or the communities you meet along the journey, the people are the one thing I always remember. Sure, the travel, the flexibility, working outside are all incredible but it’s the people. They are what makes it.

Why did you choose to work for 360?

For exactly that reason – the people are awesome! I became a 360 leader having never met the team in the office, but I already feel like I’ve known Marni for years!

The philosophy of 360 is perfectly in line with mine and that of our social enterprise: SayYesMore – expeditions built with such a positive and passionate team can only be destined for greatness!

Thank you for a really fantastic week. The training you put us through was just right – it was challenging, fun and prepared us really well. I certainly had a wonderful time and owe a great deal to Stuart for being such a good guide.

Mont Blanc
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