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Cash will be raised on Saturday for Eleanor Weekes' Mount Kilimanjaro climb for Parkinson's UK

An ambitious woman is climbing Mount Kilimanjaro to raise money and awareness of Parkinson’s disease.

Eleanor Weekes, 21, a former Brockhill Park student, will be doing the gruelling eight-day hike next month – inspired by her beloved grandad.

Michael Watson, 72, of Tritton Gardens in Dymchurch, has a condition called Lewy Body which is a combination of Parkinson’s disease and dementia.

Eleanor Weekes with grandad Michael Watson

Eleanor Weekes with grandad Michael Watson

Separately, the conditions have their own symptoms.

With Parkinson’s, a neurological condition, the main symptoms are tremor, rigidity and slowness of movement.

Dementia is a mental condition which can see a change in personality, impaired reasoning and short term memory loss.

Miss Weekes, a contemporary dance university graduate now working in central London, said: “Seeing my grandad suffer has made me want to help other people also suffering.

'I also want to raise money to give my grandad the appropriate care.' - Eleanor Weekes

“I also want to raise money to give my grandad the appropriate care.

“A lot of inspiration has come from seeing my nan, Hazel, struggle.

“She is absolutely amazing and is doing everything she can by caring for my grandad 24/7.

"However it’s getting to the stage where she isn’t managing and finds herself regularly breaking down.

“Especially when having to call the paramedics sometimes three times a day.”
Half of the donations are going to Parkinson’s UK, with the rest going towards Mr Watson’s care.

Mount Kilimanjaro

Mount Kilimanjaro

Miss Weekes, who used to live in Etchinghill, is funding her own trip to Tanzania and will fly out on Friday, August 19, where she will spend 10 days.

The target is to reach £1,000 and so far nearly £300 has been pledged.

It is hoped that a large portion of the money will be generated at a pre-trek event on Saturday, August 6, when prizes will be auctioned off.

It takes place at Hythe Sports Pavilion from 7.30pm and will include a buffet, live music and games. Entry tickets are £15 per person.

For details, or to buy a ticket, email eleanorweekes94@gmail.com or click here to donate.

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