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Vegan Leaders Climb Mount Kilimanjaro to Benefit Mercy For Animals

Milo Runkle, founder of Mercy For Animals, and Jennifer Stojkovic, founder of Vegan Women Summit, will attempt to scale the world’s tallest freestanding mountain—Mount Kilimanjaro—to raise money for farmed animals.

On August 21, Milo and Jennifer will embark on a six-day Machame route across diverse African terrain to support and raise awareness about Mercy For Animals’ life-changing work.

The duo aims to raise $19,341, a dollar per foot of elevation climbed.

The founders hope the climb will bring awareness to the plight of the 70 billion land animals confined in factory farms globally. This challenging journey will also demonstrate the health and fitness benefits of plant-based eating.

For Milo, this climb is personal, as he’s making the trek in honor of Oscar, a young motherless calf he met while investigating factory dairy farms in India. All alone, chained by the neck, and left for dead, like so many other animals, Oscar had been deemed nothing but a byproduct by the factory farming industry.  

Mercy For Animals has conducted more than 80 investigations revealing widespread abuse in factory farms and slaughterhouses. Milo and Jennifer will shine a light on this abuse as they ascend Mount Kilimanjaro. 

“This climb is dedicated to Oscar and all the nameless farmed animals who never knew freedom or love,” said Milo Runkle. “All animals deserve kindness and respect. Powered by plants and fueled by compassion, we’re taking our message to new heights. Plant-based eating is an antidote to many of the greatest global problems we face today, including the climate crisis and industrial-scale animal abuse.”

For Jennifer, a business leader in the food tech industry, the reason for the climb is simple: to inspire and empower women to stand up for the planet and animals. Through her work at Vegan Women Summit, Jennifer is inspiring a global movement of women professionals dedicating their careers to creating a kinder, more sustainable world. 

“As a vegan woman, I am constantly underestimated and challenged by misconceptions around my abilities,” Jennifer shared. “With this climb, I am here to prove that strong, compassionate women can stand up and make a difference for the planet, for the animals, and for the future of humanity. We need bold change now, and I am calling on each and every woman around the world to join me on this mission.” 

The pair has been preparing for the hike by running daily, hiking, and weightlifting. They will power their journey exclusively with traditional plant-based Tanzanian staples, including beans, lentils, and ugali. 

Funds raised from this adventure will support Mercy For Animals’ Conscious Eating program, which works with large institutions, such as school districts, universities, and hospitals, to reduce the meat, dairy, and eggs they serve by at least 20 percent. The program has already replaced more than 16 million animal-based meals with vegan meals!

Join Milo and Jennifer by giving a gift today in honor of Oscar and all the animals we fight for. To make a donation, please visit MercyForAnimals.org/UpwardForOscar.