Sponsors Jaguar Sewing Machines support Kilimanjaro expedition

Climbing Kilimanjaro to support mothers and babies in Kenya

Age was no barrier for the Nishkam Challenge team

A break from our usual array of wonderful sewing hints and tips with this blog entry, with a wonderful account of a recent expedition to help a hospital in Kericho.

One of our senior colleagues, Palma, has recently returned from a life-changing trip to Africa in a concerted attempt to help a group of people who really need help.

The urge to help others persuaded him to join a small, dedicated team of people to organise a fundraising climb up Mount Kilimanjaro – and Jaguar Sewing Machines to support the Nishkam Challenge as it was called. The planning started last year with the culmination of the seven day effort a couple of months ago.

Palma and nineteen other people travelled to Kilimanjaro: it’s worth noting that none of this team included any professional trackers.  They comprised of a group of ordinary individuals, all committed to doing good, helping others and who were really grateful for the opportunity to be able to raise money for mothers and children in a small hospital in Kenya.

The heart of the community

Kericho District Hospital is in the heart of the community in Kenya: it desperately needs new facilities and equipment.

We were shocked to learn that babies and mothers die in this hospital because they do not have proper facilities.

As a parent and proud grandfather, Palma told us that he was shocked to learn about the issues that the Africans have to deal with for processes and treatments that we consider to be routine – babies and mothers dying for want of things that we all take for granted. It’s a heartbreaking story.

The challenge was – what could be done about this? 

It is for this reason that this small team of people climbed Kilimanjaro – and together they have now raised around £70,000 which will ALL go to provide essential new facilities for the mothers and babies of Kenya.  They all travelled at their own expense and paid for all of their own food, hotels and other expenses so that all the funds raised could go to this noteworthy cause.

Spirits were high during the arduous climb
Spirits were high during the arduous climb

Preparation for the expedition

For those of you that know Palma, he is not exactly a spring chicken! Even his family thought that he was crazy to undertake a challenge of this magnitude at his age.

But, we are glad to say that after 6 months of training, walks, sleep outs, climbs and lots of gym training – he made it to the summit of Kilimanjaro.

As he reached the summit – and after a short recovery period – he said

“This is the hardest thing that I have ever done in my life. There were many instances where I and the team wanted to give up – but this was not a choice for us, we had to do it for the mothers and babies who need and use the maternity ward in Kenya”.

Thank you to our supporters

We really want to say a huge “thank you” to everyone – all the customers and others that have supported this cause through their kind donations.

Finally, last but not least are the key corporate sponsors that supported this mission – one of which was Jaguar Sewing Machines (Japan) who also supported this project.

Our hearty and sincere thanks go to them – and for fulfilling their duty of corporate and social responsibility in such a wonderful way.  

The group celebrate at the summit
Celebrations at the summit!

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