News about Hillingdon Samaritans

20 March 2013

Mount Kilimanjaro – a beautiful beast!

(l-r) Shizana Arshad, Roy Mapplebeck and Angie Paterson


Following a year of preparation volunteers Roy Mapplebeck and Shizana Arshad of West Drayton both took on a gruelling challenge to climb the world’s largest freestanding mountain Mount Kilimanjaro in January 2013 in an effort to raise £10,000 for Samaritans Hillingdon. 

Roy was a champion in the challenge successfully reaching the summit at 5,895m, taking his final hike in the moonlight up a steep scree slope at a freezing -12 degrees centigrade on Day 6.

Unfortunately, Shizana was taken ill on Day 4 with pneumonia and had to descend the mountain at 4,125m following a demanding three day trek through rainforest, heath, moorland and beautiful surroundings.

However, together they will have raised a massive £9,000 once monies are collected and are still aiming for that £10,000 target before the year end to meet their challenge.

“It started to get life threatening due to the lack of oxygen so I had to come back down. I was absolutely gutted and felt like I had let everyone down but then well wishes from people made me realise although it is disappointing it’s not the destination but the journey that matters and most importantly the fundraising we achieved. It’s a dangerous place and I’m thankful I came back down in one piece as many before me have not. It was a truly amazing experience, a real eye opener to one of Africa’s beautiful countries and a real adventure. Many have conquered that beautiful beast of a mountain and many have not, Hakuna Matata! Hopefully one day I’ll get the chance to try again.” Shizana

Shizana plans to do a sky dive this summer and Roy’s next adventures will take him on the ‘El Camino de Santiago’.

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