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On the grapevine - January 27


Hike up Kilimanjaro

This year discover Mount Kilimanjaro, Africa’s tallest mountain, by trekking on behalf of children’s charity Children Today.

Participants will be taking the challenge to raise funds for a very worthy cause. Children Today believes the provision of specialised equipment for children and young people with disabilities has a direct and immediate impact on their quality of life and independence and is vital in helping them to overcoming obstacles to live a life of greater independence.

This feat of human endurance is open to anyone who is aged 18 or over on the day of travel. For those with a sense of adventure and the desire to do something challenging for a great cause, call Ceri Ward at the office |on 01244 335 622 or email: ceri@childrentoday.org.uk for an information pack.

Take to the hills

The Ulster Cancer Foundation (UCF) is calling on keen walkers to take a winter hike to the top of Ben Nevis, the UK’s highest mountain, to raise funds for cancer patients and their families.

The challenging 4,408ft ascent takes place from Thursday, March 10, to Sunday, March 13, and participants can expect snowy, wintry, even blizzard conditions in temperatures that can plunge below -20C.

UCF has to date escorted more than 4,500 walkers to the top of the peak, raising more than £2 million to support the charity’s vital services.

Those taking part are asked to pay a £75 registration fee and agree to raise a minimum sponsorship of £650.

On receipt of the registration form you will be sent a complete fundraising pack as well as a guide to any equipment you may need. UCF’s experienced fundraising team are here to guide and support you every step of the way — so why not register today?

Contact Sarah Atcheson on 9068 0765 or email sarahatcheson@ulstercancer.org

Sponsored diet

PRAXIS Care, a charity that provides services for people affected by mental ill health, learning disability and dementia, is running a fun sponsored diet campaign for Valentine’s Day 2011.

The sponsored event will run until Friday, February 11, throughout Ireland, the Isle of Man and the UK.

The aim of the campaign is for individuals to lose some weight and raise valuable funds to help support adults and children who suffer mental ill health and learning disability, and for older people including people with dementia.

To sign up for the challenge, simply email your details to geraldineandrews@praxiscare.org.uk. Alternatively visit the Praxis Care website at www.praxiscare.org.uk


Castlereagh marks Holocaust memorial day

Castlereagh Borough Council’s Good Relations programme will mark the 66th anniversary of Holocaust Memorial Day with a public event on Wednesday, February 2 at the Council Civic Centre.

The event will commence at 7pm with a focus on the millions of untold stories of individuals, communities and towns and how we can translate their words and lessons of the past into contemporary action.

It questions whether we know about the stories in our own communities today and how we can create a safer and better future for all.

The event will include excerpts from a performance piece focusing on the stories of local women from the Castlereagh and Lisburn areas, put together by playwright and theatre expert Jo Egan, which captures the role of women in local communities over the past years.

A personal testimony from Holocaust survivor Joanna Millen, who was orphaned at the age of two in a concentration camp 50 miles outside Prague, will also be heard. This will be a moving and inspiring recollection.

Joanna will also take questions about her experiences and her life since then.

Admission is free and refreshments will be served at both events.

Advanced booking is essential. For further details contact the good relations officer on 028 90494672.

Autism training sessions

Helping Hands autism support group, which offers weekly play days for children on the ASD spectrum, is delighted to be able to offer the following training events to any family or community organisation that is affected by autism, ASD, Asperger’s or challenging behaviours.

Please feel free to pass on this information to anyone situated in the east Belfast or Castlereagh area.

All events will be situated in Hanwood Complex, Kinross Avenue, Tullycarnet:

Tuesday, February 1: PECS (using picture exchange communication system).

Tuesday, February 15: The impact of sensory issues on the management of challenging behaviour.

Thursday, March 3: Dads evening — Parenting a child with autism.

Tuesday, March 15: Grandparents evening — Granparenting a child with autism.

Tuesday, March 29: Siblings evening — Being a brother or sister to someone with autism.

Tuesday, April 12: Volunteers in the community — Supporting children and adults with autism and their families within your organisation.

Caroline Birch, chairperson of the group, said: “We feel very privileged to be able to offer these services completely free of charge and would ask you to forward this information on to whoever you feel would benefit from this training.”

If you require further information please contact the group via email at helpinghandsbelfast@yahoo.co.uk, or telephone 07889542960.

Belfast Telegraph