Jennings-Bates, an advocate for Canadian Charity Rally4Life, is well known in Canada for his philanthropic exploits. He will not be doing this project on his own however, he will be joined by 200 of the worlds best climbers, pilots and adventurers who have united to help reduce poverty by joining a project called “Wings of Kilimanjaro”
The Wings of Kilimanjaro was conceived by Australian entrepreneur, Adrian McRae who has been working with the Tanzanian government to orchestrate the first legal flight from the summit. Part of the agreement includes a program of poverty reduction in the African host country of Tanzania. Wings of Kilimanjaro is expecting to raise over $1 million for charity partners Plant With Purpose and ONE Difference.
Jennings-Bates who was contacted by McRae shortly after his return from Australia this spring found the project hard to pass up on! “It is humbling and a privilege to be a part of the trip, there are so many world class pilots, but how could I turn down an opportunity to climb to to the roof of Africa and fly from the summit” said Jennings-Bates, adding “the opportunity fits in well with my goal of personally raising $4 million for charity even though I primarily support the Canadian Charity, Rally4Life”
For Jennings-Bates the adventure will not be without it’s challenges. “Anytime a climber ascends to the rare air of 20,000 feet, acclimatisation is critical and there is no doubt that some of the climbers may not acclimatise and will subsequently not be able to launch. Of course, if we all summit, we then need favourable weather to be able to fly from the summit. Logistically, it is a massive attempt, but has the ability to raise much needed awareness and funds for the people of Tanzania”
Jennings-Bates anticipates flying out of YLW Kelowna towards the end of January. The official climb starts in the last few days of January with the summit flight expected around the end of the first week of February. If all goes well, Jennings-Bates hopes to isolate some other charity project opportunities in Kenya where currently Rally4Life has helped finance a total of four safe water installations.
The immediate task for Jennings-Bates is to work on fund raising for the project and securing corporate partnerships. “For me to continue to do these adventures it is critical that we isolate some Canadian corporations with a social conscience. The media we can generate for the charity is substantial and that brings in the much needed donations. The most difficult part of any project is getting to the start!” stated Jennings-Bates
For more information visit www.WingsofKilimanjaro.com or www.MarkJenningsBates.com