Just under three years ago on a Friday night, my son told me he had something to tell my wife and me. He was 23 years old. He told us very calmly (and bravely) that he had been to the hospital, and had been diagnosed with testicular cancer.
To hear this from my big, healthy, strong son was a total shock! At first, you can’t believe what you are hearing. I vowed that, after he had clear tests, I would give something back to the testicular cancer charity.
A promotional photo from the Everyman cancer charity
Many years before, on a safari trip in Kenya, I had flown past Mt. Kilimanjaro (Tanzania) and marveled at it. The combination of the testicular cancer charity, called Everyman, and Kilimanjaro became clear in my mind.
A long-time friend, Paul Baker, had seen a celebrity charity attempt to climb Kili and, as we talked about it, we agreed we would take up the challenge. I set out to raise £5000 ($7500)—http://www.justgiving.com/Chris-McAneny—and to increase awareness of male/testicular cancers.
My training expedition to Mount Teide
, an extinct volcano on Tenerife (one of the Canary Islands)
After five weeks, through the fabulous generosity of friends and industry colleagues from across the worldwide electronics industry, we have already exceeded this target. However, we are determined to raise more. Many, many people have given so generously and, in particular, Microchip has really gotten involved…
In addition to several generous donations to the charity, Microchip is building an altimeter for me to take on my climb, using eXtreme Low Power PIC® microcontrollers with integrated mTouch™ capacitive touch sensing and other Microchip technologies. More details to follow as we “test drive” the Altimeter device they are building, all the way to the top of Kilimanjaro, at 19,340 feet… Hopefully!!!
I should also reference IDT and Littelfuse, who have also made major contributions. Additionally, I have now contacted a children’s orphanage in Tanzania, and am raising money so that while I am in Tanzania I can give something back to the local people.
In my next update, I will share more details on the incredible children of the orphanage and the car-washing “Soapathon” we are holding today at Future Europe, to raise money for this wonderful cause: http://www.kilimanjaro-orphanage.com. In the meantime, below is a little more info on the testicular-cancer charity and Mt. Kilimanjaro…
Dedicated to raising money to tackle male cancer. Male cancers are increasing and definitely do not get the publicity that breast cancer rightly achieves. With early diagnosis, these cancers can in many cases be successfully addressed. Men need to be more in touch with their bodies and open in their communication (strong silent strategy does not work).
- Location: Tanzania (near the Kenyan border)
- Height: 19,340 ft.
- Highest Peak in Africa
- Highest Free-Standing Mountain in the World (not part of a mountain range)
- Formed from an extinct volcano
- Has a glacier as part of the mountain (incredible to think of a glacier in Africa!!!)