A DETERMINED family is hoping to raise vital funds for a relative’s life-saving equipment by tackling a mountainous challenge.

Justine Sheeky, 31, her husband, Joe, 33, sister Rachel Johannsen, 27, and brother-in-law Adam Cranmer, 25, are taking on the gruelling Three Peaks Challenge.

Operations co-ordinator Justine organised the mammoth ascents which will see the Colchester and Little Bentley climbers attempt to summit Snowdon, Scafell Pike and Ben Nevis in just 24 hours to help fund an expensive monitoring system for her cousin Joshua, who suffers from epilepsy and autism.

Speaking about the steep treks, which will push the group to its limits as they chip away at a total of 3,064 metres of mountain, Justine said: ‘‘I think we are all excited but apprehensive about what lies in store in terms of physical and mental exhaustion.

‘‘Hopefully, with the added mental push that doing this for family will give us, we will achieve our goal and I am hoping the elation we will all feel getting to the end of this challenge will far outweigh the pain during the climbs.’’

Joshua’s autism renders him speechless and the severity of his debilitating epilepsy means he now requires round-the-clock care and is constantly at risk of having a dangerous seizure.

Any feeling of excitement or sadness he experiences, for example, heightens the chance of a seizure, so celebratory occasions such as Christmas and birthdays must be acted out in advance to desensitise him to the excitement in store.

His unique mixture of illnesses also means the extent to which the current monitoring systems available to the family can alleviate their worries and benefit Joshua is limited.

Justine, of Manningtree Road, Little Bentley, also ran in the 2013 London Marathon for the Epilepsy Society.

She said: ‘‘Epilepsy equipment that must be worn on the body is no good to a person who suffers with extreme autism and, therefore, cannot be relied upon.

‘‘The current equipment has missed many of his seizures and so we’re hoping to help fund a piece of equipment that can constantly monitor Joshua’s pulse, temperature and heartbeat from a distance and relay the information through a screen to the room of his parents.’’

Justine’s campaign has so far raised more than £1,200.

If you would like to sponsor Justine and her family’s climbs, visit www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/justine-sheekey-2.