From 'Hot Cape to Cold Cape': Kingsley Holgate's latest 30 000km expedition aims to take on malaria

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adventurer Kingsley Holgate will be fighting against malaria in a grueling 30 000km transcontinental expedition
adventurer Kingsley Holgate will be fighting against malaria in a grueling 30 000km transcontinental expedition
Hugo Chichava ,Goodbye Malaria
  • Explorer and humanitarian Kingsley Holgate and his team will go on a 30 000km journey from Cape Agulhas in South Africa to Nordkapp in Norway to raise funds to fight malaria. 
  • The expedition is expected o take eight months and the team will travel through 30 countries. 
  • They will distribute reading glasses to poor sighted elderly people under Mashozi's Rite to Sight campaign. 

Explorer and humanitarian Kingsley Holgate has set out on a mission to help fight malaria by embarking on the world's first "Hot Cape to Cold Cape" expedition.

The 30 000km expedition will be from the southern-most tip of Africa, Cape Agulhas, to the most northern part of Europe, Nordkapp, in Arctic Circle in Norway.

On Friday, Holgate and his team of explorers launched their 40th expedition, called the Defender Transcontinental Expedition, at Constitutional Hill in Johannesburg. 

"This one is special because it is huge. We are taking a scroll of peace and goodwill all the way from Cape Agulhas to the Constitutional Hill in front of the Enteral Flame of our Democracy. We are carrying a preamble of our wonderful Constitution inside our scroll of peace and goodwill," he said. 

READ | NICD warning: Malaria cases can be misdiagnosed as Covid

Holgate and his team started in the Cape, made a stop at Constitutional Hill, before travelling to northern KwaZulu-Natal, where they will cross over to Mozambique to join Goodbye Malaria, an organisation fighting the disease on the continent.

"In two days, we will be working with Goodbye Malaria, who already have reached over two million people in terms of saving lives in malaria prevention. We will be joining their spray teams as part of that initiative. Then in areas where they are not spraying, we will be distributing tens of thousands of mosquito nets to pregnant moms and to moms with little kids because, as you know, they are the most vulnerable to the bite," Holgate said. 

The team will also be distributing reading glasses to poor-sighted elderly people, through Mashozi's Rite to Sight, which was started by, and is a tribute to, Holgate's late wife Gill. The initiative has been able to provide 230 000 pairs of reading glasses. 

Holgate and his team of six will travel to 30 countries, and he told News24 that he would have loved to travel through Ethiopia.

adventurer Kingsley Holgate will be fighting again
adventurer Kingsley Holgate will be fighting against malaria in a grueling 30 000km transcontinental expedition

"There is currently a war in Ethiopia. We would have generally gone through Ethiopia. It is a country that we are used to and really enjoy, but is currently not safe, so through good contacts we have made over the years, we will now be crossing South Sudan. We will be doing it with a military convoy to assist us, and only a few months ago, in the act of peace and reconciliation, north Sudan and south Sudan opened a border. We will probably be the first adventurers ever to cross that border in the last 30 years," he said. 

They will be making the great trek in kitted out Land Rover Defenders, which will be put on a ship once they get to Egypt in order to cross over to the Arctic Circle. From there, they will drive to Wales.

"Our clear ambition is to take the Zulu calabash that we filled with water at Cape Agulhas, where the two oceans meet, and empty in at Nordkapp Arctic Circle, in the north of Norway," he said.

When asked what motivates him to keep going, Holgate said:

It's part of our lives. Often, we are asked the question of what guides us, where do we get the strength of spirit to do these things, and I must share with you, it is about an absolute passion for mama Africa, that's what guides us, what guides us is a passion for this beautiful continent. We believe it has a place in this world. That's the importance of leaving from the eternal flame and carrying a preamble of our Constitution.

The expedition is expected to take eight months. 

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