North Pole trek for kids charity

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Carl Roland ©

Carl Roland ©

A man from Merseyside will undertake a 100-mile skiing expedition to the North Pole in order to raise money for the children’s charity ‘When You Wish Upon A Star’.

Pulling a 100lb sled of supplies across drifting ice for 10 hours a day, Carl Roland, 38, will undertake the most demanding role of his life. It will be an incredible feat of endurance, crossing the uneven and broken pack ice of the Polar Sea, before ultimately arriving at the northern-most point of the earth – the Geographic North Pole.

Mr Roland told JMU Journalism: “Temperatures can reach -50 on a windy day and with 24 hours sunlight a day staying warm is a constant endeavour.

“The sea ice is always in motion, making the terrain unpredictable and difficult to navigate. Whilst you sleep in your tent you can feel and hear the ice moving and breaking below you which can be scary.”

When You Wish Upon A Star is a small charity which aims to grant the wishes of children suffering from life-threatening illnesses. Since the charity was founded in 1990, they have granted over 14,500 wishes for some very brave and courageous children and their families.

Mr Roland said: “I just want to help kids going through a tough time and hopefully this challenge and any money I can raise will be brilliant.

“It’s a daunting challenge but these opportunities rarely come along – it’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience.”

Carl has been training for the last six months by running with weights on a cord behind him, and has been told to eat 7,000 calories a day to help him get through the two-week trek he is set to begin on the 5th April 2013.

“I have always been adventurous and ever since I was a child I have been fascinated by the Arctic and Antarctic regions, so the opportunity to combine the two for charity was one I simply could not pass over.

“The idea of pushing myself both mentally and physically is something that I have always wanted to undertake and, if by taking on this challenge I can make a difference to the lives of even a handful of poorly children, then that is all the incentive I need.”

About Lucy Baines, JMU Journalism