Climb raised thousands for charity
12:00pm Monday 26th August 2013 in News
FOUR former Sir Thomas Picton School pupils have collectively raised £4,500 for charity when they scaled Mount Kilimanjaro.
Sophie Pierce, from Keeston, Lucy Hancock, from Roch, Katy Evans, from Spittal, and Hannah Leggett, from Neyland, jetted off to Africa in June to climb the 19,342-foot mountain in aid of their individual charities.
Since returning, Hannah has raised £1,000 for the National Kidney Federation and the Morriston Home Dialysis Unit, while Sophie collected £2,000 for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust.
Lucy has raised £1,000 for the Alzheimer's Society in memory of her grandfather, and Katy has raised £500 for the Lymphoma Association in memory of her mother.
Despite suffering altitude sickness during the four-day trek to the summit in temperatures approaching -20°C, the 21-year-olds said they had an experience they would never forget.
Hannah, who reached Uhuru Peak at 5,895m with Katy, said: "When you were at the top looking down, it was breathtaking - the sheer size of it - because all the way along, the peak looked so small and far away.
"The whole experience has been life changing and I would recommend it to anyone."
Sophie, who reached Gilman's Point, said: "It's an experience I will remember for the rest of my life. For me, coming back to Pembrokeshire was a bit of an anticlimax because I felt that we had changed, but nothing else had.
"We had one guide, Amos, and his motto in life was 'Hakuna Matata'. It was refreshing to see their relaxed attitude - they are by no means wealthy, and they do not have masses of things like us, but they have masses of spirit."
Lucy, who got to Kibo Hut base camp at 4,700m, added: "Before going to Africa I thought that it was all about getting to the summit, and it wasn't until I came back that I realised that summitting was just one small part of the whole journey. I feel so proud that we did it."
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