Three brave Diabetes UK supporters spent nine thrilling days trekking the volcanic mountains of Ecuador, raising thousands of pounds for people with diabetes.
Surjeet Soin, Ray Marett and Andy Harrison climbed the 5897-metre Mount Cotopaxi - one of the highest active volcanoes in the world - with much of their time spent on its sub-zero glaciers.
Surjeet Soin, 63, has had Type 2 diabetes for 12 years and is Chairman of Diabetes UK’s Luton Voluntary Group. “Diabetes doesn’t stop me from doing anything,” said Surjeet. “I’ve already conquered Everest Base Camp, but climbing Mount Cotopaxi was by far the greatest challenge I’ve experienced.”
Andy Harrison, 25, from Cheshire, was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes when he was a toddler but it wasn’t until he developed retinopathy in one eye that he knew it was time to take his condition seriously. “I had to start eating right and getting fit,” said Andy. “Training for the trek helped me to focus on this goal.”
“Some nights we had to start trekking at 3am so the snow wouldn’t melt,” Andy continued enthusiastically, “but meeting so many great people made it worth it.”
Andy made friends with 30-year-old Ray Marett of Norwich who was prompted to take on the South American challenge when he learned that his five-year-old nephew had Type 1 diabetes.
“The expedition was incredibly difficult,” Ray admitted. “Sometimes we had to walk for over seven hours a day and we slept in freezing conditions. But it was all for a great cause – Diabetes UK does some brilliant work.”
To help these courageous volcano trekkers meet their final £4000 fundraising target, please visit:http://www.justgiving.com/surjeetandray.