Adventurous receptionist Pat to scale Africa’s highest peak to raise funds for Dove Cottage Day Hospice and Amy’s Fund

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A determined walker is preparing to climb Mount Kilimanjaro with the aim of raising thousands of pounds for Dove Cottage Day Hospice.

Pat Szymkiw (59) works as a receptionist at the hospice in Stathern, which offers day care to people with life-limiting conditions living in north east Leicestershire and south east Nottinghamshire.

She will leave the UK in two weeks time with 17 friends and regulars from The Plough at Normanton-on-the-Wolds who will begin their climb on Saturday, January 31, having paid out of their own pockets to take part in the challenge.

The group aim to reach the highest point in Africa - the Kibo summit at 19,341ft - in the early hours of February 7.

Pat said: “This was something we all talked about doing last summer and a challenge I’m looking forward to. Dove is obviously a charity close to my heart. My work colleagues have been very supportive but think I’m barking mad!”

Money raised will be split 50/50 between Dove Cottage and Amy’s Fund - a charity set up in 2013 which is devoted to raising funds for the Nottingham University Hospital Critical Care Unit following the death of Amy Duffield who used to work at The Plough.

To sponsor Pat and the team visit http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/team/PloughKiliClimbers