By Candice de Beer
Seven years ago Richard Mabaso, a social entrepreneur and humanitarian established the Trek4Mandela expedition. Each year a group of amateur climbers led by Sibusiso Vilane summit Mount Kilimanjaro (Africa’s highest peak) on Mandela Day, 18 July. This year to pay homage to what would be Madiba’s centenary birthday, fastjet will be sponsoring the trekkers return flights from Dar es Salaam to Kilimanjaro International Airport, about 10 km from base camp.
By supporting these climbers, fastjet is also supporting a far more important cause - Caring4Girls.
Throughout the continent young girls, particularly those living in rural Africa, too often miss school during their monthly cycle as they do not have access to sanitary towels. The Caring4Girls initiative aims to restore the dignity of these young women and keep them in school by providing these basic essentials. It’s also about empowering young women in Africa.
Kevin Ritchie, who will be attempting to climb Mount Kilimanjaro for the first time said, “I’m climbing this mountain so that girls don’t have to overcome their own mountains every month.”
“It’s about changing taboos in African society,” said Ritchie. “Men too can make a positive impact.” Ritchie, a former journalist and newspaper editor, is climbing Kilimanjaro to document the Trek and the climbers involved - who are either self-funded or corporately sponsored.
But it’s not just about climbing the great Kili.
It’s about raising awareness for the Caring4Girls programme - a cause which is gaining momentum across South Africa, having already spread to all provinces. And all funds raised will go towards supporting and educating schools.
Fastjet is not only sponsoring the flights, but will also take part in educational activations across Tanzania.
To see a list of those taking part in the climb and to find out more about this fantastic cause visit the ImbumbaFoundation website.
To find out more about where fastjet flies to, view our route map. Fly with fastjet, Africa's affordable airline.