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a blog by Chris Barrow

Kilimanjaro – The Challenge Awaits

This time next year an intrepid team of Bridge2Aid trekkers will have returned from an epic trip climbing Africa’s highest mountain – and you could be one of them!

There are few moments in life that will stay with you through your years, but reaching the top of Kilimanjaro is one of them. The mountain is immense/other synonym. Located in Tanzania, it is 49 miles long by 24 miles wide and soars above the Rift Valley to a staggering 19,335 feet. Conquering it is a challenge that draws trekkers from across the globe.

Tanzania is also the base for Bridge2Aid, the UK dental and community development charity that operates the ‘Dental Volunteer Programme’ which takes volunteer dentists, hygienists and nurses to Tanzania four times a year to train local health workers in emergency dentistry.

Since 2004, Bridge2Aid has been able to help tens of thousand of people thanks to the generosity of its supporters, many of them members of the UK dental profession. By fundraising for Bridge2Aid’s vital work, your climb will make a lasting difference in the lives of hundreds of thousands more people in Tanzania.

Bridge2Aid’s Chief Executive Mark Topley said: “It has been a privilege to hear the stories told by the climbers from our Climb Kili events over the past 3 years. It is such an amazing place and the sense of achievement experienced by the climbers is mirrored by the stories of what we have been able to achieve through the funds raised by Climb Kili. Over the past 4 years we have been able to expand our training of Clinical Officers in Emergency Dentistry from just 15 trainees in 2006 to almost 50 in 2010. We just could not have done that, and in turn treated so many thousands of people, without the funds raised by our climbers.”

Simon Roland, a dentist from London climbed Kili in 2007 and is now a trustee of Bridge2Aid: “Climbing Kili was a tough but wonderful experience. We met some great people and had a fantastic time together as we all battled to make it to the top of the mountain over 5 arduous but very rewarding days. The end result was a great sense of achievement whilst at the same time raising money for a very worthy cause. I heartily recommend everyone to take part in 2011.”

To take part in ‘Climb Kili’ participants need to raise at least £2,950 – sounds a big amount, and it is, but very achievable and B2A will provide lots of support to help you not only reach the target but exceed it. As well as a fundraising pack and advice on the phone, there are also training weekends between now and the challenge when participants will receive fundraising advice and swap ideas with other climbers, many of whom will have raised amounts like this before.

Since the Comic Relief team climbed the mountain in 2009, Climb Kili has become a very popular challenge, so contact Bridge2Aid soon to secure your place before they run out!

To find out more, contact Naomi at the Bridge2Aid UK office on 01243 780102, email or visit the website –

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