Waterford man to climb Kilimanjaro with washing machine on his back

Enda O'Doherty says it represents the 'heavy hidden load' people carry

Waterford man to climb Kilimanjaro with washing machine on his back

Image supplied to Newstalk.com

Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania is generally considered a feat in itself.

But one Irish man is looking to better that for charity - Enda O'Doherty from Waterford will carry a Beko washing machine to the summit.

The climb is in aid of Pieta House.

O'Doherty aims to spread a positive mental health message through the symbolism of carrying a heavy hidden load, and to bring awareness to the importance of asking for help and 'sharing the load'.

The purpose of his challenge, which takes place in July, is threefold.

He wants to raise awareness that it is OK not to be OK and ask for help, he wants to rise funds for Pieta House and to climb to the top of Kilimanjaro.

Image supplied to Newstalk.com

O'Doherty has previously undertaken some gruelling challenges with a washing machine on his back - including climbing Slievenamon (721m) and also walking 379 kilometres from Belfast to Waterford.

Currently in a tight training schedule, O'Doherty said: "In July 2017 I intend to carry my washing machine to the summit of Africa’s highest peak, Mount Kilimanjaro.

"My goal is simple, I aim to raise vital funds for Pieta House and to spread a positive mental health message.

"Most people ask 'why a washing machine?' From my side, it’s very simple, the washing machine that I’m carrying symbolises the heavy hidden load that many people carry and stay quiet.

"We are aiming to raise awareness and also raise funds for Pieta House and every little helps."

Pieta House, a centre for the prevention of self-harm and suicide, was set up a decade ago in Dublin.

It has seen and helped over 20,000 people in suicidal distress or engaging in self-harm - and has since established eight subsequent centres around the country.

O'Doherty will be speaking to The Pat Kenny Show on Wednesday from 9.00am. 

You can get more information or donate here

Anyone affected by issues raised in this article can contact Pieta House on 1800-247-247 or get more information here