GROW Kilimanjaro Fundraising Climb Featured on TV3
Mountaineer and GROW mental health ambassador, Derek Mahon, has appeared on TV3’s Ireland AM alongside GROW’s National Programme Coordinator, Christine Fitzgerald.
Both were interviewed on Ireland AM on Thursday, July 27th ahead of Derek’s departure for Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa as part of his bid to scale the world’s seven highest summits.
Derek, who departed for Kilimanjaro later that evening, spoke about his decision to partner with GROW and support GROW’s message of positive mental health and recovery.
55-year-old Derek from the Naul in Co. Dublin had never attempted climbing a mountain six years ago. In 2014, Derek summited Mount Everest. Currently, the father-of-three is attempting to scale Mount Kilimanjaro – one of the mountains within the seven summits.
Derek is undertaking the challenge in support of GROW, which holds over 120 free peer-support meetings across Ireland each week, along with community education, workplace, carer and young adult programmes.
Besides Mount Everest, Derek has previously climbed Mount Elbrus in Russia and Mont Blanc in The Alps. His latest climb will bring him a mountain closer to his ultimate goal of the seven summits.
Speaking about climbing in support of GROW and positive mental health, Derek highlights how GROW implements a 12-step programme, helping people to journey step-by-step to mental health recovery.
“GROW is all about breaking isolation, fostering social connection, shared experience and weekly support meetings based on practical steps and recovery. Mental health, wellbeing and ongoing support are vital to us all. I am very proud to be promoting GROW and GROW’s message of positive mental health and recovery,” he says.
Chief Executive of GROW Michele Kerrigan says:
“The challenges which lie ahead for Derek during this arduous climb are similar in many respects to the challenges faced by people who struggle on a daily basis with their mental wellbeing. GROW’s Recovery Programme prepares people to take small, but very significant and practical steps towards achieving their ultimate goal of personal recovery.
“For many, recovery from mental health difficulties begins with a single step. At GROW, ongoing peer support, shared experiences and personal testimonies provide inspiration in helping others journey towards recovery.
“We are delighted that Derek has chosen to be an ambassador for GROW and to help us in promoting our message of positive mental health, recovery and wellbeing. We extend every good wish to Derek as he embarks on his latest mountaineering adventure.”