THREE Beara men are planning to climb Kilimanjaro in Tanzania to raise €10,000 for a mental health awareness charity.
And to reach that target for Breaking the Silence they’ve set up a Go Fund me page called Mad Men Going Up A Mountain.
On September 15th the trio will fly out from Dublin airport to take on the challenge.
Peter Elphick, who is from Bere Island but now lives in Kilcatherine, came up with the idea to do the climb as a form of ‘therapy’ following the tragic and untimely death of his nephew who, at the age of 16, committed suicide in February 2017.
His friend, Brian McCarthy from Ardgroom – a buddy through the Urhan Football Club – decided to do the challenge as well, and then Carol Dixon from Eyeries joined. Peter spoke to The Southern Star about the death of his nephew saying: ‘The impact of his passing was devastating – not just on our family but, because he was so young, it was felt by the entire community.
‘Suicide,’ according to Peter, ‘is something, especially in this country, that we are never too far away from. Everyone has a connection with it. There isn’t one of us who doesn’t know somebody who was lost to suicide.’
He said the three of them hope – through the Go Fund Me page and the sponsorship cards that have been liberally dispersed throughout the Beara Peninsula – that they can raise €10,000 for Breaking the Silence charity.
They have been in training since January, completing a six-hour and an eight-hour hike every week to prepare.
Peter said he chose Kilimanjaro because he thought it would be really tough and would be ‘therapy for myself,’ as well as helping an organisation that encourages people to speak out about bullying and mental health issues.