MAG is a leading UK airport group and owns and operates three UK airports - Manchester, London Stansted, and East Midlands. This corporate fundraising page will be used to collect donations for MAG's chosen charities - Magic Breakfast, The Children's Society and Medcare. All funds donated will be shared with our charities, after covering any advanced donations paid.
This January, EMA STM Michael McCorkindale will climb Aconcagua, the second highest of the world's 7 summits and the highest mountain outside of the Himalayas for our MAG charities; The Children's Society, Magic Breakfast and Medcare.
Michael will complete his 6,960.8 m (22,837 ft) climb across 23 days - 27th Jan through to 18th Feb and would love your support in raising as much as possible for our charities, supporting the lives of young people.
Here Michael shares his story about why he sets these challenges for himself...
A short story full of different emotions, there have been more ups and downs than mountains I have climbed, but where did it all begin? Why take on these beasts of a challenge? Why should you donate and help those who need it most?
Let’s go back to the beginning, I had a rocky start in life being in and out of hospital from birth until my mid-teens with an illness. I guess it kept me out of trouble and I did get my own room! However, I remember sitting next to the hospital window at night looking out at the stars… thinking will I ever get out of here? Will I ever be normal? What did I do wrong? Why me? It was difficult being a kid and not having the answers, it was difficult entering life with one parent. It was difficult to make friends in my condition, and when I wasn’t in hospital I could never join in with the other kids. In fact, when I was home, I spent the majority of my time in my room, it became my safe space. My mum did an amazing job raising me and my siblings, at times we were also faced with some sort of violence but mum always had our back. I did want to be strong, but when I was fourteen, I gave up. Fortunately, it didn’t work out and I am honoured to still be here today. When I was 16 my illness was controlled and I could live a normal life, but how do you do this when you have hidden away for so long? These are the questions many children ask themselves today, I’m here to help them find answers.
Now I could live a normal life, I wanted to do everything! I decided to focus on fitness which led me to joining the army, my time in the military gave me the confidence, discipline and sense of adventure that I needed in my life.
After leaving the army I wanted to really spread my wings! I decided to go crazy and live life beyond the limits. I have many adventures, stories and near-misses to share… everything from travelling the world, back packing across Egypt, picking up wild snakes, swimming with sharks, marathons, being lost at sea in a dingy with one oar and a bottle of whiskey, accidently cutting myself in Tutankhamun’s Tomb, experiencing venom poisoning after being washed into a coral, climbing the roof of Africa on Kilimanjaro, expedition leading over a hundred people around the peaks of the UK, the list goes on and on… And now, signing up to my biggest challenge to date “Aconcagua” another step closer to the stars.
If I could talk to 14 years old me and tell myself what life has in store, I wouldn’t have made the decision that could have ended in an early life.
It breaks my heart knowing there are people out there who feel helpless. I want those children who look out of the window at the stars asking all those questions to know… it’s okay and to never give up. So please donate, we need children to know they are not alone, we need the right medication to treat people and we need to help those who have less.
I’m taking the next step, will you take it with me?
Look out for updates from Michael during his training for Aconcagua and news direct from the mountain during the climb itself!