Blind Mahomed to tackle mountain challenge
A blind student is to climb Mount Kilimanjaro to raise money for a children's charity.
Mahomed Khatri, 22, will not be able to take his guide dog on the expedition, but will use a cane and be supported by a friend.
He was seven when he lost the sight in his right eye after an operation to repair a detached retina.
Despite numerous operations, he then went blind in his left eye at the age of 15.
But Mahomed has never let this hold him back.
He represented England in the Blind T20 Cricket World Cup in India last December, has skydived in Australia and bungee jumped in Africa.
He is now preparing for his latest challenge to climb Africa's tallest mountain in September.
Mahomed, from Spinney Hills, Leicester, said: "I don't have a problem with the walking, but I've been warned that the altitude is what gets to you. It gets harder to breathe the higher you get."
Mahomed, who is studying for a Masters degree in philosophy at the University of York, wrote on his online fund-raising page: "Climbing Africa's biggest mountain is not for the weak-hearted. Now try doing it with your eyes closed!"
But when asked if he was nervous about the trip, he told the Mercury: "No, I wouldn't say I'm nervous. More apprehensive."
He said his biggest concern was "sleeping in the freezing cold, halfway up a mountain... and finding a decent toilet!"
Mahomed is taking part in the climb with the University of York's RAG society to raise money for its affiliated charity Hope for Children (HOPE).
The charity supports education and healthcare, to improve children's quality of life in Africa, Asia and Europe.
Mahomed said: "We spend one week climbing Kili, and then visit the projects set up by Hope.
"We get to see where the money we raised is going, and meet the people we have helped.
"I should say I have done lots of preparation and training but I've had too much work.
"I've just been playing my normal sports, cricket and football."
Mahomed's guide dog, Vargo, cannot accompany him, but he said: "It's good for both of us to get a break from each other.
"The responsibility of having a dog is like having a child and Vargo will appreciate the freedom of not always being on a harness."
Mahomed's dad, Gafar, said: "My son has always been adventurous – we're very proud."
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