Stop what you’re doing. Be still and take a moment to think. Close your eyes and let your mind wander. Ask yourself the question: “What events in my life have shaped who I am?” It’s a hard question at first, but the more you think the more things will start to come to you. Maybe it’s milestones like graduating college and beginning your career. The birth of a child or the death of someone close to you. Late night conversations and trips that weren’t just beautiful places, but that changed the way you look at the world and yourself. If you’re thinking about all these moments and are both grateful for them and desperate for more, then you may be hearing your adventurous spirit call to you – and we have just what it needs.

In June 2018, as part of our year-long celebration of our 10th anniversary of service, Water to Thrive Executive Director Susanne Wilson will be leading an expedition to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro, in our service nation of Tanzania. Standing 19,318 feet above sea level, Mt. Kilimanjaro is the tallest free-standing mountain in the world. What better trip could you take to combine the adventure of a lifetime with changing lives forever?

Water to Thrive’s summer expedition will raise funds to support our mission of bringing clean, safe water to rural African communities in need, and will launch with visits to Tanzanian water projects. Afterwards, the group will begin the eight-day climb up the Lemosho Route of the mountain on target for a full moon summit.

The trip will take place June 14th – July 1st 2018, so mark your calendar. When presented with a challenge, it’s tempting to try and talk ourselves out of it, and make ourselves believe we can’t do it. So we leave you with these facts to inspire you:

  • South African Bernard Goosen twice scaled Mt. Kilimanjaro in a wheelchair. His first summit, in 2003, took nine days; his second, four years later, took only six. Born with cerebral palsy, Goosen used a modified wheelchair, mostly without assistance, to climb the mountain.

  • The oldest person ever to summit Mt. Kilimanjaro was 87-year-old Frenchman Valtee Daniel.

  • Nearly every climber who has summited Uhuru Peak, the highest summit on Kibo’s crater rim, has recorded his or her thoughts about the accomplishment in a book stored in a wooden box at the top. (Now that’s a book I want to read!)

  • Almost every kind of ecological system is found on the mountain: cultivated land, rainforest, heath, moorland, alpine desert and an arctic summit.

We’re making preparations, so make it your goal for 2018, and contact Susanne at or by phoning 512.206.4495 for more information.