A dedicated team of Newcastle College colleagues have successfully completed the formidable UK Three Peaks Challenge. This test of endurance sees teams climb the highest peaks in Scotland (Ben Nevis), England (Scafell Pike) and Wales (Snowdon) in under 24 hours. 

Despite encountering a number of challenges along the way, the Newcastle College team conquered it in an impressive 23 hours and 53 minutes. That’s 23 miles of hiking, 3064 metres of ascent and 462 miles of driving between countries, in under a day. 

Brogan O’Connor, Barry Rizza, Paul Whitfield, Joe Adams, Jack Redpath, Alan Fenton, Catherine Orridge, Jonathan Rees, Maria Gibson and drivers Neil Anderson and Terry Aisbitt have raised almost £3,000 for the Bambisanani Partnership and the MyWalk campaign. 

Half of the money raised will go to MyWalk, a campaign that provides school shoes for children in rural South Africa who walk barefoot to school. The shoes, crafted from recycled hospital waste, cost less than £2 per pair. This donation will equip an entire primary school of 700 children with shoes. 

The remaining funds will support other Bambisanani activities across schools and communities in rural South Africa. 

Brogan O'Connor, Newcastle College Enrichment and Development Manager, and trustee of the Bambisanani Partnership, said: "It is an honour to come together as a college annually and raise funds for a charity that has been a huge part of my life since the age of 16, and does amazing work in the UK and in South Africa. Whilst they are challenging, our annual fundraisers are a key part of our academic calendar now and something I, and many of us, really look forward to. We are already planning next year’s!  

“To have hit our target and raised so much money makes all the effort worth it and a huge thank-you must go to the staff and students across the Newcastle College network who supported with donations, messages of support, and shares on social media." 

David Geldart from Bambisanani added, “Brogan and her team deserve the utmost credit on successfully completing this world-renowned endurance challenge on behalf of the Bambisanani Partnership. Newcastle College is a key member of the partnership and has added new dimensions to both our work in South Africa and to our fundraising. 

“The college has developed a great link with the wonderful MyWalk initiative and students from the college will be volunteering in South Africa next month. It is fantastic to see institutions provide genuine global learning opportunities for their students; it’s always about walking the walk. Well done to Brogan and her team for outstanding leadership on all fronts.”