Cassie Mutch is preparing to climb Mt Kilimanjaro next year as a way to help raise enough money to breed, raise, train and match a Guide Dog for someone who is blind or vision impaired.

Cassie started volunteering with Guide Dogs Queensland in July last year as a way to give back and help people. Now, she’s taking that quite literally, to a whole new level.

“As a student I didn’t have the financial capacity to help, but I did have the time and I did have some skills that could help,” Cassie recalled.

Now working for the organisation, Cassie said she knew how much of a difference donations made – with more than 90 per cent of funding coming from generous community support.

“I’ve met some incredible people working for Guide Dogs, but one that stands out in particular was a man who had been matched with his first Guide Dog,” she remembered.

“The way he described how life-changing that Guide Dog had been for him almost brought me to tears. We take every day actions for granted, but for some people with low or no vision, it is the everyday which can be the most difficult.

“With his Guide Dog by his side, he is not only able to navigate independently, he also has a best friend by his side throughout everything.”

The adventure-loving 23-year-old who is packing quirky socks as a memory of home, said she was also excited by the personal challenge of climbing Mt Kilimanjaro.

“I’ve done a little bit of hiking while holidaying around Australia, at places like King’s Canyon and Cradle Mountain and also places like Mt Warning, but I’ve never attempted anything close to Kilimanjaro,” she said.

“That’s all part of the excitement, right?

“I’m also fascinated by Africa – the culture and the animals and I can’t wait to experience that. I’m also looking forward to hiking alongside a group of strangers and getting to know everyone along the way – I don’t think you can share something so life-changing with someone and not bond in some way.”

Cassie is aiming to raise $3500 – while the group aims to raise $100,000 in total to cover the costs of breeding, raising, training and placing two Guide Dogs – always motivated by her passion to help others.

“If you have the capacity to give – money or time – knowing that your generosity will literally change someone’s life, then why wouldn’t you?”

You can donate to Cassie’s fundraising by clicking here.

Are you interested in joining Cassie and the team for Mt Kilimanjaro? Find out more, or sign up here.

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