Mount Cook Adventure Centre staff net £41,718 for Kenya gender charity

Mount Cook Adventure Centre staff Toria Cox and Robin Sibson were among 18 trekkers to reach the 5,199-metre high summit of Mount Kenya.
Mount Cook Adventure Centre staff Toria Cox and Robin Sibson were among 18 trekkers to reach the 5,199-metre high summit of Mount Kenya.

Staff from Middleton’s Mount Cook Adventure Centre have helped raise thousands of pounds for a gender equality charity after an epic trip up a Kenyan mountain.

Marketing officer Toria Cox and director Robin Sibson completed the Mount Kenya challenge earlier this year but now the final fundraising total has been confirmed as £41,718.

Toria, 25 and originally from Ashbourne, said: “I feel privileged to have had the opportunity to climb Africa’s second highest mountain in aid of charity. We not only completed a huge personal challenge but also raised an incredible amount for Team Kenya.

“These vital funds will be spent on community training in gender equality, support and advice for victims of gender-based violence and mixed-gender football to engage girls and boys in gender equality issues.”

During their stay in Kenya, Toria, Robin and their 16 fellow trekkers visited two schools in the Ndhiwa region which had benefited from Team Kenya funding.

The funds raised by the team will allow the expansion of an advocacy programme from eight schools to 12, and fund training for teachers in 28 schools.

Mount Cook marketing officer Toria Cox with some of the schoolchildren the charity works with.

Mount Cook marketing officer Toria Cox with some of the schoolchildren the charity works with.

The scheme will equip educators with the skills to help ensure girls and young women are treated as equal, respected and safe at home, in school and in the community, while young men are also taught to overcome embedded gender roles.

Toria said: “All of the teachers were clearly advocates for girls’ education and understood its importance.

“They were also doing whatever they could to help young girls in poverty overcome the barriers which prevented them from accessing an education, including counselling, support and advice.”

She added: “There is still some way to go before girls and women are equal members of the community.

“However, it is so evident the positive impact Team Kenya is having, and I’m very proud to have supported the important work this charity is doing. Long may it continue.”