Tack­ling Mt Kil­i­man­jaro with Taupo¯

Taupo Times - - YOUR LOCAL NEWS - STEPH RANGI

De­bra Ridg­way and her late grandmother shared a love of trav­el­ling and they still have one more ad­ven­ture left.

Ridg­way and her grandmother, Agnes Stan­ton had talked about a trip to Kil­i­man­jaro for more than 15 years and when Agnes died, she left spe­cial in­struc­tions for her grand­daugh­ter, a be­quest, to go ahead and climb it any­way.

‘‘It has been a con­scious de­ci­sion to use it to do this trip in her mem­ory,’’ Ridg­way said.

‘‘And it’s a way of say­ing thank you to Lake Taupo¯ Hospice for all the care she re­ceived in her last phase of life.’’

Ridg­way will leave for Kil­i­man­jaro at the end of this month but won’t be climb­ing Mt Kil­i­man­jaro un­til early Oc­to­ber.

‘‘Part of my ad­ven­ture is hon­our­ing and re­mem­ber­ing Gran’ by tak­ing her up the moun­tain with me,’’ she said.

‘‘I want to carry part of her in a tan­gi­ble and phys­i­cal way, be­cause there’s no way I could go up my­self with­out her en­cour­age­ment, sup­port and fi­nan­cial sup­port that she gave me.’’

Ridg­way’s climb of Mt Kil­i­man­jaro will also serve as a way to raise money for Lake Taupo¯ Hospice.

‘‘When I started work­ing at Lake Taupo Hospice I saw that there were so many peo­ple who were climb­ing their own moun­tains and that per­haps, too, would like in some way to be able to go up Mt Kil­i­man­jaro,’’ she said.

And that’s when Ridg­way’s idea was born.

Her grandmother loved fab­ric, so Ridg­way thought that cre­at­ing a ban­ner, made up of squares of fab­ric, to fly the sum­mit of Mt Kil­i­man­jaro, would be the per­fect way to cre­ate a tan­gi­ble mem­ory of her.

‘‘Plus, it will pro­vide a per­fect chance for oth­ers to ‘go to the top’ in spirit, even if they can’t do it in per­son,’’ she said.

To climb Mt Kil­i­man­jaro with Ridg­way, peo­ple can buy squares of the ban­ner which can be ded­i­cated to the mem­ory of some­one, or sim­ply rep­re­sent the sup­port of the in­di­vid­ual donor or their fam­ily.

Two hun­dred squares are avail­able at $50 each. There are other ways to help out, like pur­chas­ing a $10 card and do­ing the 70km climb your own way, and all money raised will go to the Hospice.

For more in­for­ma­tion on how to help, phone the Hospice on 07 377 4252

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