Ellie Conquers Kilimanjaro and Raises Thousands for Charity
Posted: Tue, 24 Nov 2015
Eighteen-year-old Ellie Allan, from Rothley, undertook the eight-day expedition last month (Oct), in aid of the Joe Humphries Memorial Trust (JHMT).
Ellie – a Loughborough Endowed Schools student – was a childhood friend of Joe Humphries, the Rothley teenager who collapsed and died from sudden arrhythmic death syndrome (SADS) while out jogging in October 2012.
Since his death, Joe's friends and family have worked tirelessly to raise awareness of SADS and campaign for a better understanding of sudden, unexpected death in young people.
They set up the Joe Humpries Memorial Trust (JHMT), and have campaigned for compulsory CPR training in schools and defibrillators in schools, community venues and sports clubs.
Ellie said: "I decided to trek Kilimanjaro after my dad said for my 18th birthday present he would take me anywhere in the world. I thought it was something a bit different and worthwhile to do.
"I chose to raise money for the JHMT because I knew Joe well as a child, and because as well as having that personal connection, it's such a worthwhile charity to raise money for.
"I enjoy hiking as a hobby – in 2014, I did the Three Peaks challenge for the JHMT and I really enjoyed it, so I wanted to take on another challenge.
"The best bit of the trip was definitely reaching the summit. After six days of walking with little energy left, seeing the sign at the summit was overwhelming.
"The night before, we had to set off from the campsite at midnight and walk uphill for eight hours in temperatures as low as minus 20 degrees, only stopping every hour for a five-minute break. It was a really good experience, but definitely the hardest thing I've ever done!"
All of the £2,951 Ellie raised will go directly to the JHMT.
Steve Humphries, chair of the Joe Humphries Memorial Trust and Joe's dad, said: "This is a fantastic personal achievement for Ellie, and we're honoured that she chose to dedicate her trip to Joe.
"Ellie's determination and strength of spirit have taken her all the way to the top of Africa's tallest mountain, and it's these qualities that have also helped her to raise such a fantastic amount for the Trust.
"This is another example of one of the many inspirational young people from Leicester and Leicestershire who are so committed to helping Joe's Trust reduce the incidence of such devastating loss of young lives.
"We'll put the money raised to good use – it will go towards our vital work raising awareness of sudden heart deaths, providing defibrillators and training, and helping to fund young people to reach their goals through our Inspire Awards scheme."