Climbing Mount Kilimanjaro

(19,341 feet above sea level)

To Support the National Eating Disorders Association

Hope from a Family as they reached their Summit


On October 1, 2017, the Hemendinger family of Amity Harbor, NY successfully reached the summit of Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, Africa. Together, as a family, they completed the 10 day journey of the highest free standing mountain in the world at 19,341 feet. The 91 mile round trip journey consisted of daily hiking ranging from 7-12 miles through the 5 different climate zones of Kilimanjaro including a Rain Forest, an Alpine Desert and the Arctic Summit. 

Hemendinger Kili Picutre

Reaching Mt. Kilimanjaro’s summit symbolized the family’s recovery and freedom from a decade’s battle with eating disorders. In 2005, Nancy and Gerald’s twin teenage daughters, Ashtyn & Emily, were diagnosed with anorexia nervosa. During this time, the family struggled with locating the right treatment facilities routinely traveling from Long Island to Massachusetts, North Carolina and New Jersey as well as the financial burden associated with cost of treatment.  

Emily Hemendinger, who has been in recovery for 10 years and now an eating disorders therapist in Denver Colorado, said “30 million people suffer with a clinically significant eating disorders in the United States and many more go undiagnosed. Eating disorders have the highest mortality rate of any other mental illness. In addition, research for evidence based treatment is severely underfunded and we, as a family, wanted to make a difference and set an example that there is a light at the end of the tunnel…there is HOPE.” 

Gerald Hemendinger added that “together we walked as a family, step by step, to the summit of Kilimanjaro.  This climb was reflective of our struggles as a family during treatment, in which we were able to boost each other up at times of despair, it defined our strength as individuals and as a family and for others in similar situations you too can reach your summit by having faith and hope.”

Donate today and help them reach their goal of $19,341. The donations go directly to the National Eating Disorders Association’s Feeding Hope Fund for Clinical Research, which provides grants to top-level researchers in the eating disorders field.   


Sending a donation via check? Please make the check out to NEDA or the National Eating Disorders Association and mail to the address below. Please also indicate on a note with the check or in the memo field that the check is for the Hemendinger Kilimanjaro fundraising campaign.


200 W. 41st St. Suite 1203, New York, NY 10036

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