Paramedic Jonny prepares for trek

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A Derbyshire-based paramedic is preparing for a once-in-a-lifetime trek to raise money for charity.

Jonny Stamford, 25, is set to trek up Mount Kilimanjaro to raise vital funds for the Brain Tumour Charity.

The paramedic describes his personal reasons for taking on such a tough challenge.

He said: “In 2012 when I was 21, I was diagnosed with a brain tumour. They weren’t going to operate initially as I had no worrying symptoms, but then one of the walls weakened and the tumour bulged towards my brain stem.

“I was at university at the time, studying to be a paramedic and I had to defer my course for three months.

“The first operation took 13-and-a-half hours and was really successful and I went back to part-time work four weeks later.”

The tumour returned six months later, meaning that Jonny had to have another 13-hour operation.

Only this time the surgery left him with a left-sided facial weakness.

His recovery was further complicated when he contracted bacterial meningitis and had to have further emergency surgery to save his life.

While this was happening, Jonny continued his studies and placements at Buxton ambulance station.

He is now a full-time paramedic and as well as training for the trek, has gone back to university.

Jonny added: “I have volunteered with several charities over the years and since my diagnosis I have always hoped to get involved with a charity who works directly in the fight against brain tumours.

“After much research, I discovered the excellent work that the Brain Tumour Charity does and also the extent of the problem which they are leading the fight against.

”It was when recovering from the latest nerve graft surgery that I decided I would set a challenge to raise vital funds and awareness for the cause.”

Jonny sets off for Tanzania from London on February 19.

Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest mountain in Africa with the summit 5,895m above sea level.

It will take Jonny and best friend Joel Rishworth six days to reach its summit and then descend.

To sponsor Jonny, visit https://www.justgiving.com/jonny-stamford/

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