Last November, Mo and Irena Jevtic trekked to Everest Base Camp, raising more than £1,700 for social enterprise Acorn. They have decided to aim even higher by taking on Mount Kilimanjaro for the first time, and they will be joined by their friend Maja Platisa, a vet at New Era.
Mo, the manager of Nightingales care agency, has a connection with Acorn as every week he supports Jake, a young man who has a disability, working in the plant nursery and then having lunch in the café.
Mo said: “It takes only five days to climb to an altitude similar to Kala Patthar in Nepal, at 5,664m, which last November we did on day nine. We will first trek to Kilimanjaro’s smaller brother, Mount Meru, to acclimatise. Some people have asked if that will tire us out. For me, tiredness is not the issue. Base Camp was a 120km round-trip. Kilimanjaro is 60. It is half the distance in half the time but it is higher. Altitude is the biggest concern and to increase our chances we will do Mount Meru first.”
Kilimanjaro is the highest single freestanding mountain in the world. At 5,895m, it is 531m higher than Everest Base Camp.
Although Maja is an avid hiker and has climbed Scafell Pike and Ben Nevis, she has never been higher than 1,800m, and describes herself as both ‘excited and terrified’.
Money raised will go towards funding a much-needed piece of equipment in the plant nursery which controls the ventilation, irrigation and heating of the glasshouse and is vital for plant production – as well as benefiting the people working in it.
Mo added: “It’s just nice to do something for others, not just for yourself. I want this to be more than one person’s ambition to summit a mountain. I want some benefit for the community, to share it with others and make them a part of my journey, and maybe inspire people.”
Acorn provides work and training opportunities to people who have a disability or long-term health condition.
The trio are now training on long walks on the north coast every weekend. They leave Jersey on 1st February, summiting on the 12th.
Pictured: Maja Platisa (left) is joining Irena and Mo Jevtic on their Kili challenge in February