Doha team returns after scaling Kilimanjaro
27 Jan 2014 - 4:11
The team on Mount Kilimanjaro.
DOHA: The Doha-based team of climbers, who were on a mission to climb Mount Kilimanjaro to raise awareness of the importance of organ donations, has returned after their successful endeavour.
Canadian-born Michael Arbow and his teammates Lori Burns and Don Bastarache, conquered Africa’s highest mountain, at almost 6,000 metres, to raise awareness about organ donation and thank donors for their gift of life.
Arbow, a lecturer at the College of the North Atlantic Qatar, is the father of a girl born with cystic fibrosis.
Elspeth required a lung transplant after her lung function deteriorated.
Four years ago, she received a double lung transplant as a result of an organ donation.
Today, at 17, she is studying at University of Toronto in Canada.
Arbow contacted Dr Riadh Fadhil, Director of Qatar Organ Donation Centre (Hiba) to discuss the climb he was planning and how it could contribute to the organ donation campaign.
“Going to the top of Kilimanjaro was a life challenge that pushed us emotionally and physically, and the shortage of oxygen meant we had to take two breaths for each one we would normally need to take in Doha.
“The challenge was real but what we experienced for a few days is sadly what many people requiring an organ transplant feel for much longer.
“We are proud of hoisting the flags at the top of the mountain and the role we played in creating greater awareness of Qatar’s Organ Donation Centre,” said Arbow.
Dr Fadhil said, “When Michael approached me and told me the story of his daughter and his wish to raise awareness of organ donation, I was deeply moved by his passion and motivation.
“It was an innovative and inspiring way of thanking all organ donors and their families and raise awareness about organ donation and how it could give life to desperate patients.
“At the same time, it was also an excellent way of thanking Qatar for the excellent services it provides to all residents in terms of organ donation and transplantation, regardless of their nationality.”
Dr Yousef Al Maslamani, Director of Qatar Center for Organ Transplantation, said Hamad Medical Corporation is grateful to the team for their initiative to honour organ donors.
“Honouring, respecting and supporting organ donors and their families represent a major pillar of the Doha Donation Accord that has become a world- recognised model for promoting organ donation,” Dr Al Maslamani added.