A Crawley couple will be climbing Ben Nevis in August to raise money for Dementia UK.
Christine Brown, 39 and her husband Adam, 37 from West Green, have organised and paid for the hike themselves.
Ben Nevis, located in the western end of the Scottish highlands, is the highest mountain in the entire British Isles, standing at 1,344 metres (4,409 ft) above sea level.
Christine, who is a Dementia Friends volunteer, found out during Christmas two years ago her grandmother was diagnosed with dementia. She is now staying at a care home in London.
The mother-of-one has already started training. She and her husband are visiting the gym twice a week, and going ‘up and down the South Downs’.
She said: “We’re trying to avoid the well-beaten track, instead going for the more difficult route to prepare us for the hike. I haven’t really hiked before, I’m starting just for this.
When asked why people should donate, Christine said: “It affects everyone in some way, I don’t know anyone who doesn’t have a relative with dementia,
“The figures are rising. We have an ageing population and the problem won’t go away.”
Dementia triggers loss of brain functions and becomes progressively severe.
Currently, the UK has 850,000 sufferers. By 2025, this number is predicted to raise to over one million.
Two thirds of the cost of dementia is paid for by families supporting a relative with dementia.
Because of long waiting lists for care homes that specialise in dementia, some patients need home care which can cost up to £900 a week – hence the need for donations to ease the burden on families.
The charity climb will bolster Crawley’s reputation as a ‘Dementia-friendly community’ – a title recognised by the Prime Minister David Cameron.
Dementia UK is a charity that provides specialist one-to-one support and expert advice for people living with dementia.
Sarah Austin, the charity’s community fundraising manager said: We’re so incredibly thankful to Christine and Adam for taking on the iconic Ben Nevis challenge and for their hard work fundraising for Dementia UK.
“The money they raise will help make specialist one-to-one support and expert advice available to more families living with the difficult everyday reality of dementia.”
Anyone wanting to sponsor Christine and Adam can make a donation at www.justgiving.com/Ben-nevis-dementiauk
For more information about the charity go to www.dementiauk.org