A GROUP of 20 women are set to climb the tallest mountain in Africa in aid of several local charities.

The team – which includes members from Hampshire, one from Stockholm and another from Egypt – will meet at the base of Kilimanjaro today (October 10).

Chandler's Ford resident Shadi Ganjavian-Connor, the founder of fundraising company Team GC, organised the exhibition.

She will be joined by Jenny Risberg, Amanda Hickson, Sarah Jennings, Caroline Day, Suzanne Golledge, Sarah Woodford, Laura Boxall, Deborah Hughes, Victoria Fordham, Margaret Stonadge, Diana Lowth, Michelle Fulford, Lisa Moore-Ramdin, Stella Bowling, Lindy Mitchell, Alison Moore, Sue Woods, Helen Bartlet, Sally Louden and Liz Lewis.

Shadi said: "Early last year, I put out a social media call asking for 10 women to register an interest. The spaces filled within a week, so I added another five spaces – again, gone in 10 days.

"I offered 20 spaces as a final number and they were filled shortly after. As women, we have a tendency to find a way to say no, like 'I can't leave the kids' or 'the husband needs me at home'.

"But these women have cracked the code, and it's already changed some of their lives. One of our members has lost 20kg in training."

Shadi hopes the team can collectively raise between £80,000 and £100,000.

Proceeds will be split between Street Reach Winchester, Trinity Winchester, Maggie’s Place Southampton, The Brain Tumor Charity, Dementia UK, and Target Ovarian Cancer.

Donations will also go to Alresford-based charity The Murray Parish Trust, which will help its iMRI Suite Appeal.

This is a project to raise £5.5 million for an intra-operative MRI room at Southampton Children’s Hospital.

It will make the hospital a next generation centre for paediatric neurosurgery and pioneering research, which will advance the treatment and care of children across the region and beyond.

Sarah Parish and Jim Murray, founders and trustees of The Murray Parish Trust said: "We are delighted to announce our latest appeal. It’s our biggest and most ambitious yet and will see Southampton Children’s Hospital placed amongst the country’s leading paediatric centres of excellence."