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University and Students' Union Team up for Charitable Kilimanjaro Climbs

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Macmillan Cancer Support and Worcester Snoezelen will both receive a boost from the University of Worcester thanks to challenging climbs of the world’s highest freestanding mountain, Mount Kilimanjaro.

Carly Baldwin, Press Assistant at the University, successfully completed the challenge last month, raising £5,000 for Macmillan Cancer Support. Inspired by her two grandmothers’ fight against the disease, Carly decided that this was the best way to honour their memory.

After 18 months of hard physical training and organising a variety of fundraising events, Carly – one of a team of 28 – flew to Tanzania on September 13th to start the eight-day trek.

Talking about the gruelling hike, she says: “The repetitive nature of the climb - although some of the views were breathtaking - and the physical exhaustion, coupled with the fact that nearly all the climbers were doing the challenge in memory of a loved one they had lost, made the whole process mentally very tough.”

After beginning the final ascent at 11pm, the following morning was special for Carly, who reached the summit at around 8am: “After losing a night’s sleep, you don't really have the energy to celebrate too much at the top, it's more just a feeling of relief that you have made it.

“Now, I'm extremely glad I did it, although I don't think it's quite sunk in yet. I was lucky that everyone I was climbing with was absolutely lovely, so it's nice to be able to share memories and photographs now that it's all over! I'd love to do something else for charity in the future, but I think my mountain-climbing days are over for now!” 

Kilimanjaro is also the target for Kynton Swingle, Worcester Students’ Union President, later this month. Supporting Worcester Snoezelen, a local independent charity which provides a multi-sensory environment for people with severe learning difficulties, he aims to raise £2,600.

Being something he always wanted to do, Kynton and his fellow climbers begin the challenge on October 25th. Aspiring to achieve his ambitious target, he said: “Hopefully by doing something like this for a great cause such as Worcester Snoezelen, it will inspire other people to support them in their fundraising appeal to improve their facilities.”

Anyone who would like to support Kynton’s climb can contribute via donating through http://www.justgiving.com/Kynton-Swingle or via text by texting ‘WORC72’ plus the amount to 70070.