Hello family! Today for inspiration Monday I am sitting down with Andiswa Siwela from Dutywa who currently lives in Cape Town. True to form having moved to the Mother city, she fell in love with the mountain. She is now merging her love for the mountain and her love for helping others to climb mount Kilimanjaro whilst helping a worthy cause close to her heart.
What ignited your love for hiking and how did Mt Kili become your goal?
I was once invited by Asanda Sakawuli to do a hike and I just fell in love with it. The 2018 Trek for Mandela hike that led to the passing of Gugu Zulu on the mountain, due to illness,made me curious of Mount Kilimanjaro. Thereafter I read more about it and I said to myself one day I would love to visit this mountain. In October 2019 the vision came and it hit me hard and since then I have never looked back.
Who are you climbing with ?
Two girls from Johannesburg, Pam and Mbali and with our agent G2G ADVENTURES. We are leaving on the 26th of August and coming back on the 4 September 2021. I wanted to go last year but due to Covid our plans were put on hold. Thia year , with a new team,our dream will become a reality.
Were you able to secure sponsors ?
Yes K-way sponsored some of my clothing for my journey, Photo hire, Visual Impact, Gambit Films, Ubuntu ngabantu, Over klank and private individuals. For me no one is forced to do anything but I am receiving so much support and I truly appreciate it.
You hiked the Drakensburg mountains as part of your preparation how was that experience ?
My Director recommended Sibusiso Vilane, the first black man to climb mount Kili and summit all seven summits. It was a five day hike I was with Sibusiso and Gerry Elsdon and others. This was a challenging expedition. This was due to the fact that I flew to Johannesburg and we drove down and this problematic as I struggle with motion sickness. As a result the first day hike was difficult for me, it was also challenging as I have never hiked with my fellow hikers before so some assumed I had an attitude problem but others were able to pick up I was unwell. Special shout out to our porter Mlungisi and Zikho Gratitude who helped me whilst I was sick. As the days progressed I was better and enjoying the mountain and I made new friends. It is always challenging climbing a new mountain you are not used to the terrain this is a similar fear with Mt Kilimanjaro but I am really excited. I must really thank Sibusiso Vilane for his guidance and words of experience that we will use for our climb.
How else does one prepare for such a feat?
I exercise I run, hike and gym. One also need to be mentally fit with a great attitude 😀
What is a scary fact you learned about the mountain and what have you done to prepare for it ?
Altitude and dehydration. Pole pole that’s the only way, meaning take one step at a time.
You are hiking to fix the the toilets at your former school-Qakazana middle school, how much are you trying to raise and why this particular cause?
I went to this school as a child and pit toilets were a problem then and they still are till this day. They’re now even more dilapidated. These kind of toilets are not only dangerous, illegal but they also cause a stumbling block for the learner and what of their dignity? With this hike we are trying to raise R150 000 to fix these toilets, I would like to say thankyou to everyone who has contributed thus far.
What’s your motto for life ?
” Everything is possible with God”
How do you want to be remembered?
That I get happy when someone wins
I would like to thank Andy for reminding us to follow our dreams/ goals unashamedly and boldly. Wishing her and her team a great hike and safe return. If you would like to support to this noble cause please follow the link below