Trek for Kids

Trek for Kids is an employee fundraising initiative from the GSK and Save the Children partnership. Open to GSK employees worldwide, in March 2019 the 40 selected GSK trekkers will climb the Simien Mountains in Ethiopia to raise money for Save the Children.

40 GSK employees trek the Simien Mountains raising over £270,000 for Save the Children

40 GSK employees from 25 countries recently raised over £270,000 for Save the Children by trekking the Simien Mountains in Ethiopia.

Trek for Kids, a joint initiative from the GSK and Save the Children partnership, challenged participants to raise £4,550 each (which GSK would then match), a target mirroring the height in meters of the summit of Ras Dashen. The funds raised will support partnership programme work by Save the Children, including a major vaccination programme in Ethiopia. This includes helping to buy solar-powered vaccine refrigerators, allowing remote communities to receive, and store, life-saving vaccines; helping to pay for health workers to travel to hard-to-reach communities to help deliver essential vaccination sessions; or helping to cover the transportation costs of fuel and vaccines to the health facilities where they are needed most. The GSK employees, some of whom had never undertaken a physical challenge such as this before, exceeded their joint target of £182,000 by organising a range of fundraising activities from abseiling to cakes sales, and from team building challenges to sponsored spin classes. 

GSK and Save the Children have a pioneering and powerful partnership combining GSK’s scientific and manufacturing expertise with Save the Children’s on-the-ground experience to find new ways to help bring down the number of children dying from preventable and treatable diseases.

GSK employees have always been at the heart of the partnership. Employees worldwide have raised over £3.3 million for Save the Children's work since 2013, all of which has also been matched by GSK.

This award-winning partnership has delivered measurable results. By December 2018, the global partnership had reached over 2.8 million children under five, including treating over 187,800 children for malaria, pneumonia or diarrhoea.

During their time in Ethiopia and after completing the trek, the group took part in a community visit which gave the trekkers a chance to learn more about Save the Children’s work in Ethiopia. They visited a healthcare post and met mothers who are supported through one of the charity’s nutrition programmes.

Fiona Halliday from Stockley Park, UK, who works in Global Medical team at GSK: “Trekking the Simien Mountains was the experience of a lifetime. I have never done anything like this before and have a huge sense of achievement. It was inspiring to see Save the Children’s work in action and how they are working to save the lives of vulnerable children in the poorest parts of the world. I really felt privileged to be given the opportunity to see first-hand how Save the Children are making a difference.” 

Nikki Martin, Global Employee Fundraising manager, Save the Children partnership at GSK said: “We’re absolutely delighted by the trekkers’ achievements and their commitment, not only because they beat their fundraising target, but also because their activities have inspired their colleagues, friends and families.” 

Anais Hawkins, GSK Partnership Manager at Save the Children said: ‘We are enormously grateful to the GSK trekkers who have completed this extraordinary challenge in Ethiopia, raising over £250,000 for Save the Children. We are very proud of our global partnership with GSK and it has been wonderful to see how enthusiastically their staff have supported our ambitious partnership goal of helping to save one million children’s lives. The funds raised from the trek will help improve the lives of vulnerable children all around the world.”

About the GSK and Save the Children partnership

Every day, 15,000 children under the age of five die – most from preventable causes

That’s why Save the Children and GSK joined forces in 2013.

By bringing together our unique skills and resources, we are breaking new ground and finding new ways to bring down the number of children dying from preventable diseases. Over the past five years, together, we have achieved incredible things. We have reached over 2,800,000 children under five and met head on some of the main causes of preventable child deaths – including treating over 187,800 children for malaria, pneumonia, or diarrhoea. 

And we need to carry on.  By focusing on running long-term health programmes, strengthening countries’ healthcare systems, finding new treatments and advocating for global change, we can help build a world where no child under the age of five dies from preventable causes.

About the Ethiopia Programme

Signature Programmes are Save the Children’s world class programmes which employ a suite of innovative interventions and best practice approaches and aim to generate evidence and learning and can be replicated at scale.

As part of the GSK and Save the Children Partnership, the Signature Programme in Ethiopia is working to contribute to a reduction in the number of children dying from Vaccine Preventable Diseases in the hardest to reach communities. It aims to improve the immunisation uptake of children under the age of one and ensure better access to life-saving vaccines and as well as create demand in the community for critical immunisation services.

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