A group of 32 members of the UK travel industry have raised more than £30,000 for the Planeterra Foundation and ABTA LifeLine.
The group, which included Bev Fearis, Editor of The Business Travel Magazine, took on an epic challenge to climb Mt Toubkal, the highest point in North Africa as part of the second ‘G Trek for Good’, an initiative developed by global adventure operator G Adventures in 2019.
Having battled snow, altitude and -10 degree temperatures, all 32 members of the G Trek For Good group reached the 4,167 metre summit, securing the donations that will be split equally between the two causes.
Fearis, who joined the group at a late stage, said the trek was much tougher than she had imagined.
“I knew it was going to be difficult but I hadn’t expected it to be quite so cold, so steep and so slippery. We started in the dark and even when it got light the visibility was poor, which was probably a good thing as we couldn’t see the sheer drops!” she said.
“There were some quite tricky moments, especially coming back down from the summit, but the guides and the rest of the group were amazing and we kept each other going. It was an amazing experience and one I will definitely never forget. Thank you again to everyone who donated.”
Brian Young, Managing Director at G Adventures, said he was determined to make the second G Trek for Good bigger than ever and was blown away by the support and donations received, which will go a huge way to supporting G Adventures’ mission of changing lives through travel.
“G Trek For Good started back in 2019 as a fundraising initiative to support the incredible work done by our non-profit partner, Planeterra. We took a small group of climbers up Mount Kilimanjaro and, understanding that help starts at home, we donated a percentage of these funds to ABTA LifeLine in recognition of the great work they do to support our industry colleagues. Having seen such an incredible response, we knew there was an opportunity to go bigger and ABTA LifeLine was the obvious choice of partner for our second trek.
“There is huge power in bringing people together to raise money and take on, what was for some, the toughest challenge of their life. I want to thank the incredible G Adventures Chief Experience Officers who helped ensure that every person made it to the top which, considering the conditions we faced, was no small feat. We always talk about the powerful friendships that can be made when travelling and I know that the camaraderie and connections built on Mt Toubkal will last a lifetime.
“We smashed our original fundraising goal of £20,000, and have just passed the £30,000 mark, which is down to the commitment of our climbers and the incredible generosity of everyone who donated. It really is a tribute to this amazing industry we work in. The fundraising page will remain open until 25 October 2022, so there’s still time for people to donate. I’m excited to then work with our team at Planeterra to finalise the allocation of the funds, which will make a life-changing impact to local communities visited by G Adventures,” Young continued.
Trudie Clements, Director of ABTA LifeLine, said the charity has worked tirelessly to support those who have faced difficulties through the pandemic and expect requests for support to increase as the cost of living crisis is felt through the winter months.
“The funds raised through G Trek for Good will go towards supporting the most vulnerable in our travel community who are struggling with the cost of living crisis among other things and have nowhere else to turn. It will throw them a lifeline in their time of need and make a real difference to their lives. Taking on a challenge of this nature takes time and commitment and I cannot thank those who stepped up to the challenge or donated enough,” Clements said.