In March 2015, I will be trekking over 100kms in 18 days to a highpoint of 5,545m (57x Big Ben). I will be battling with altitude, plummeting temperatures and extreme conditions to raise money, support and awareness for the Anaphylaxis Campaign.
Why am I trekking to Mt. Everest Base Camp?
By trekking to Mt. Everest Base Camp, my goal is to raise awareness of the severity of allergies. Whether it is an allergy to: insect stings; prescribed drugs; hay-fever; food; or in my case a nut allergy, my aim is to explain what having a allergy means and what you can do to help (especially if you are a non-allergy sufferer).
Allergies are often severely misunderstood. A food allergy is not an intolerance. It does not mean that the individual is fussy, it can be life-threatening. In my case, I have had my nut allergy since I was a child and I will have it for the rest of my life. My allergy is grade 6 (the highest grade possible). It is so severe that if I touch, smell or taste nuts, I can have a reaction.
An allergic reaction is the body’s way of responding to an "invader". This reaction is known as Anaphylaxis. Anaphylaxis causes a number of symptoms from a rash or hives to breathing difficulties. Allergy sufferers carry epi-pens (an auto-injector pre-filled with epinephrine, a medication that can help decrease the body's allergic reaction). If a reaction is suspected, the epi-pen should be administered immediately followed by a call to 999 stating the key word "Anaphylaxis" (see the “Could you save a life?” poster in the photo section). In my case, if this sequence of events is not followed within 2 minutes of a suspected reaction, my throat will close, my heart will stop and I will die.
2014, a 4-year-old girl went into anaphylactic shock and lost consciousness on
a plane after a passenger ignored three warnings not to eat nuts on board.
In 2014, a 15-year-old boy died after eating a Chinese take-away meal containing peanuts.
In 2013, a 13-year-old girl with a peanut allergy went into anaphylactic shock and died after eating a night time snack at summer camp.
In 2005, a 15-year-old girl with a peanut allergy died after kissing her boyfriend who had eaten a peanut butter snack.
"Our ultimate aim is to create a safe environment for all people with allergies by educating the food industry, schools, nurses, colleges, health professionals and other key audiences. Our focus is on medical facts, food labelling, risk reduction and allergen management." The Anaphylaxis Campaign (Charity Number: 1085527)
I hope that by reading this page, I have raised awareness of the severity of allergies. Just think, the next time you go out to dinner and a member raises their allergy with the catering staff, a parent informs you that their child, who is attending your child's party, has an allergy or you hear an announcement on a plane asking you to kindly refrain from eating nuts on board - it's not because allergy sufferers are being difficult, we are taking every precaution to prevent a life-threatening situation. In return, if you like the idea of me trekking for days up a very big mountain in extreme temperatures to raise awareness of the severity of allergies from the top of the world, please be kind enough to sponsor me to do this adventure for such a great cause. It’s entirely self-funded; all donations will go directly to the Anaphylaxis Campaign.
Follow my journey here: