A hero’s welcome for the Trek4Mandela team

EXECUTIVE mayor, Clr Mondli Gungubele, congratulating Jack Devnarain at OR Tambo International Airport, following a successful Mount Kilimanjaro expedition.

THE Trek4Mandela team received a hero’s welcome at OR Tambo International Airport on Monday evening.

The crowd were singing, dancing and holding placards in front of the airport’s international arrival terminals, while Ekurhuleni’s executive mayor, Clr Mondli Gungubele, stood by to give each team member a congratulatory handshake.

“Welcome home, you are the nation’s pride. Your courageous act of climbing Mount Kilimanjaro portrayed Nelson Mandela’s attribute of resilience,” said the proud Gungubele to the Trek4Mandela team.

The team landed following a successful summit of Africa’s highest peak on International Mandela Day on Saturday, July 18.

Mountaineer Sibusiso Vilane lead a group of 37 accomplished and amateur mountain climbers to Uhuru Peak, which is 5 895m above sea level, to raise funds for a good cause of restoring dignity to an African child.

270 000 girls from disadvantaged areas across South Africa are set to benefit from the Caring4Girls campaign, an initiative aimed at providing young girls with sanitary products. Penny Lebyane, a media personality and a first time climber of Mount Kilimanjaro, said: “It has been an emotional but fulfilling journey. As a woman, I resonate with the challenges of the girl child entering womanhood and the lack of sanitary products should never hinder her academic life while I can assist.”

Most of the climbers vowed to take up the challenge again next year should they be given the opportunity. They also pledged to continue to do good to honour Mandela’s legacy.

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