A DENTISTRY student who has witnessed first-hand the devastating effects of neurological disorder is set to take on a mountainous charity challenge.
After spending the summer working in Tanzania, former Arnold School pupil Oliver Hinton is preparing to climb Mount Kilimanjaro to raise cash for the Guillain-Barre Syndrome Support Group.
The rare neurological disorder has devastated the life of Oliver’s girlfriend’s father Peter Lea and the 22-year-old is determined to raise awareness of the condition.
Oliver, whose dad Roy still lives on Lytham’s West Beach, said: “The disorder has had a huge impact on Peter’s family’s life, not just his.
“Three years ago he lost all motor function overnight, was paralysed from the neck down and almost passed away. Since then he has had a very slow recovery which has taken an unbelievable amount of courage and determination.
“He was bed bound for 18 months and is still recovering at home in Sale, Manchester, but hopes to return to work one day in the future.
“I have a lot of admiration for the guy as does everyone who knew him and has met him since the illness affected him.
“The Guillain-Barre Syndrome Support Group has helped Peter and others like him in their recovery and this is why I want to raise money for them, and maybe in the future more money will be spent on research of this rare neurological disorder.”
Newcastle University student Oliver, who is in his fourth year of an RAF sponsored dental degree, chose to go to Tanzania as part of his studies and is spending the summer volunteering at Mount Meru Regional Hospital in Arusha.
Oliver, who will become a dental officer in the RAF when he graduates next year, added: “Since arriving here at the start of July it has been eye-opening to see the effects of malnutrition, HIV, low socio-economic backgrounds and poor education and oral health.
“Those factors are more prevalent here but do affect oral health in the UK so this experience will be invaluable.”
Oliver starts his climb on August 3. To sponsor him log on to www.justgiving.com/oliver-hinton