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Local business woman Rachel Hargrave has launched a training mission to get ready to scale the world’s highest freestanding mountain in September in aid of Leicester Charity Link.

Rachel, managing director and founder of The Phoenix Partners, a marketing communications agency based in Sileby, will travel to Tanzania to carry out a twelve day climb and hopes to raise £1,500 for the charity.  The route will culminate in views from the Uhuru Peak which at 5895m is the highest point in Africa.

Rachel said: “Leicester Charity Link is one of the main charities we support as a business, primarily because it does such a fantastic job in making a real difference to people’s lives at a very grass roots level.  The challenge that I will face is no less than a lot of people face every day of their lives as a result of poverty, family break ups or loss. 

“My training involves running, cycling, swimming and light weights and began in earnest a couple of weeks ago when I promptly fell off my bike and damaged my knee!  But nothing is going to deter me from achieving this challenge which has been a lifetime goal of mine as well as helping a very worthwhile cause.”

The Lemosho route Rachel will be taking is one of the least trekked.  It approaches Kilimanjaro from the west and crosses the caldera of Shira Volcano before traversing beneath the southern icefields of Kibo, Kilimanjaro’s highest volcano.  

At Easter, Rachel is embarking on a training trek up Mount Toubkal in Morocco.  In 2007 Rachel trekked to Everest base camp and already has her sights on completing another of the world’s seven highest summits next year when she takes on Aconcagua in Argentina.

In 2010 Leicester Charity Link raised over £724,000, changing the lives of 5,495 people in desperate need throughout Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland. .  Items bought include beds, clothes, school uniforms and wheelchairs.  For every £10 donation the Charity raises £50 from charitable trusts.

Speaking on behalf of the charity Susan McEniff, director of marketing and fundraising, said: “We were thrilled when Rachel called to say she wanted to dedicate her walk to us.  Every penny will help us to reach local people and children in desperate need and make a real difference to their quality of life.”

To support Rachel in her Kilimanjaro quest please visit or for more information about Leicester Charity Link please call 0116 222 2200 or visit

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One in five children in Leicester are living in poverty

Save the Children issues new research which “reveals the number of children living in deepest poverty remains unacceptably high at 1.6 million.” 

Save the Children has provided a local authority breakdown of the figures, detailing the top ten authority areas with the highest levels of severe child poverty:

1   Manchester 27%
2   Tower Hamlets 27%
3   Newham 25%
4   Leicester 24%
5   Westminster 24%
6   Nottingham 23%
7   Liverpool 23%
8   Birmingham 23%
9   Blackpool 22%
10 Hackney 22%

Click here for the full report.

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Robin was trying to start again

Robin had been through a difficult time and had just been discharged from a Mental Health Unit. He had just moved into his new home. Robin had lost all his belongings, was vulnerable and desperately trying to cope. We helped immediately and bought a bed and cooker so Robin can start rebuilding his life.

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Lily just wanted to stay in her own home

At 94 Lily’s health had deteriorated, she could no longer manage the stairs at home, was sleeping downstairs and used a commode. To stay at home she needed a stair lift, but Lily survived on a state pension. We helped immediately and purchased a stair lift so Lily can stay at home independently.

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Reema was alone

Reema, 17, left home due to abuse. Now living at a hostel she continued with school, but only had thin summer clothes, no coat and worn sandals during winter. Saving up to buy new things meant going without food. We helped immediately to provide new clothes and supported Reema through The Alderman Newton’s Educational Foundation.