Trail runner to summit seven mountains to help differently-abled children move forward.
South Africa’s top men’s trail athlete will climb seven summits in seven days this month to raise funds to help disabled children enjoy the freedom to move and learn, something the adventure enthusiast says society takes for granted.
Christiaan Greyling’s challenge is open to anyone to participate anywhere in the country and with the help of his sponsorship partners (Biogen, K-Way, Garmin, Adidas and Homechoice Development Trust), there are rewards for those who put in the effort.
The athlete made headlines in 2016 when he slept on Table Mountain and ran 21km to and from his job in Wynberg, Cape Town each day for a week, to raise awareness of the transport issues that many face on a daily basis.
“My new challenge aims to make people aware of the challenges that disabled children face,” Greyling said. “To do this, I will summit seven Western Cape mountains, of more than 1000m vertical ascent each, in seven days, to raise funds for a state-of-the-art special care school with a clinic and specially-designed playground to aid movement.” The first mountain will be Seweweekspoort, the highest mountain in the Western Cape, on Monday September 9, ending with Simonsberg in Stellenbosch on Sunday September 15. “By summiting mountains, we experience freedom, by moving, we can give freedom to others,” he said.
His chosen charity is a project partially funded by HomeChoice called Starting Chance. The non-profit organisation in Mfuleni is committed to making a difference in the lives of children in the early childhood sector, up to the age of six. Starting Chance supports more than 150 teachers, 10 0000 children at nine crèches, improving access to quality early childhood education through teacher training and assisting in developing their physical structures. This enables crèches to register with the Department of Social Development and qualify for government subsidies.
“Starting Chance has the vision of building a new school for Lonwabo Special Care School in Mfuleni and upgrade it to a special care facility with a health clinic and specially designed playground equipment,” said Starting Chance spokesman Ali Corbett. “Mfuleni children who need special care currently have to be transported to other areas.”
Greyling wants to enable kids with disabilities to have the same access to education and playground equipment as other children. “By summiting a mountain a day I’m aiming to raise one Rand for every one vertical metre climbed during the week by any of the club members, with the final goal being R50 000,” he said.
The adventurous who would like to take part can join Christiaan’s Strava Club: https://www.strava.com/clubs/7summits4SC and the less adventurous who still want to get involved can donate at: https://www.givengain.com/e/7-summits-for-starting-chance/
More about Christiaan Greyling:
One of his sporting career highlights was winning the 2015 Ultra Trail Cape Town 100km race among a very strong field of local and international athletes. He also placed second in a tough 8-day stage race in Europe, the Trans Alpine Run. In 2013, he represented South Africa in the 2013 World Ultra Trail Champs in Wales.