Our very own Harriet Spalding, Investment Sales Manager climbed her way to success as she raised over £5,600 for the Teesside Philanthropic Foundation by trekking up Africa’s highest mountain, Kilimanjaro.

Mandale Group are patrons of the Teesside based charity and kindly funded Harriet’s kit so that all money raised through sponsorship would go directly to the Teesside Philanthropic Foundation and to those that need it the most in the local area.

I was proud to do this for such a great charity, even more so now I have recently become a trustee.

After six long days of battling with altitude sickness, exhaustion and temperatures plummeting to minus 20 degrees the 5,895m summit was reached, although the eagerly anticipated high wasn’t quite as expected

When we reached the top I didn’t even feel elated, I just felt physically drained. The sense of achievement didn’t hit me until I got back down

In the build up to the expedition, long weekends were spent walking around the North York Moors, Roseberry Topping, Captain Cook’s Monument, Carlton Bank, Clay Bank and parts of the Cleveland Way but nothing could quite prepare Harriet for the gale force winds and freezing temperatures she encountered from the start “it was so cold that even my drinking water froze”.

Looking back, I can’t believe I actually did it. I don’t think I’d have made it to the top if not for thinking about the charity and the people depending on me

Without a shadow of doubt, it was the hardest thing I’ve ever done but despite everything, it was the most amazing experience and now I have had time to reflect and recuperate I’d recommend it to anyone who fancies a big challenge, and we’re both so grateful to our family, friends and colleagues for their generous sponsorship.

Everyone here at Mandale is really proud of Harriet and her excellent achievement!