We Give Back: Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro for Worldreader | Vlocity - Industry Cloud Apps

We Give Back: Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro for Worldreader

Vlocity's Kate Russo took on the challenge of climbing Africa’s highest mountain, the Kilimanjaro, over eight days for the charity, Worldreader.

Apr 13, 2020 by Kate Russo
Salesforce Alliance Director, EMEA
4 minute read
We Give Back: Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro for Worldreader

By Kate Russo, Vlocity EMEA Alliance Director. Originally posted via SF Society Magazine.

In August, I was fortunate enough to be part of an incredible team comprised of Simon Capel (Salesforce), Mike Green (Salesforce), Rob Alsos (Salesforce), Tim Cutts (Salesforce), Chris Thomas (Salesforce), Brad Newton, Anne and Neil Capel who collectively represented three continents; to take on the challenge of climbing Africa’s highest mountain and the highest free-standing mountain in the world, Kilimanjaro, over eight days for the charity, Worldreader. Our objective was to raise enough money to populate three libraries in Kenya with blue box starter kits which would contain 50 e-reader devices and thousands of books. 

Worldreader was founded by David Risher and Colin McElwee, who are championing digital reading in communities worldwide with the vision of everyone becoming a reader. To date, worldwide, 617 million children are not at a minimum reading level and the power of literacy has seen a 50% increase in childhood survival past the age of five for children born to literate mothers. With figures like these, it’s an obvious cause to get behind and with all the generous support we have had from our individual and corporate donors, FinancialForce, Appirio, BrightGen, Cloudshift, PWC and Capgemini, we can really make an impact. 

We departed for our flights to Kilimanjaro fresh-faced and filled with a range of emotions from excitement to trepidation, with frantic conversations regarding if we had packed the right equipment and if stormproof matches were really required. Before long we were in Tanzania, being introduced to an incredible support team who would guide us for the next eight days with words of encouragement ‘this is how we do it!’ and somewhat ambiguous but humorous answers when we asked if there were any animals en-route that we should be cautious of... 

We took the Lemosho route which is considered to be the most scenic of routes; with lush rainforest, alpine desert and a glacial ascent to Uhuru point which is 5,895 meters (19,341 feet) above sea level. The challenge itself, whilst physically and mentally demanding, was an incredible experience that evoked so many emotions as we banded together to support one another to push forward and positively impact so many lives.

The challenge itself, whilst physically and mentally demanding, was an incredible experience that evoked so many emotions as we banded together to support one another to push forward and positively impact so many lives.

Following Kilimanjaro, Simon Capel traveled to the Webb Memorial Library and Resource Centre in Malindi, Kenya where he got to experience first hand the impact of our cause where we launched the e-reader devices. On behalf of the team, I would like to thank Ruth Sorby from Worldreader for all of her support throughout our preparation for this challenge. 

This year, marks the ten year anniversary of Worldreader. The Co Founder and CEO, David Risher is proud to share that during this time, 13,359,404 readers have read from 40,227,578 digital books, thanks to Worldreader. That's 13,359,404 people who are more likely to be healthier, more prosperous, and more self-reliant, thanks to the incredible power of reading! Should you be interested in donating you can learn more on how by using this link.


Vlocity Value: We Give Back 

Giving back is becoming increasingly important and is prioritized in the enterprise technology business community nowadays. Since the founding of the company, one of Vlocity’s core values has been “We Give Back.” This value aligns with those of Salesforce closely, particularly when it comes to Vlociters volunteering their time or corporate charitable donations in the health and human services arena. This post is one in a series of posts sharing stories of our employees, customers, and partners giving back in a wide variety of ways.

Employee Success Giving Back Core Values Featured