At the start of my final year of university (probably before I realised just how much work final year is!) I decided that I needed something exciting in my life – Uni has meant no more walking or horse-riding in beautiful countryside and limited cycling (well XC riding). To compensate, I decided to sign on to a six day trek in Peru up to the famous Machu Picchu, with the aim of raising £3000 for the Epilepsy Society. A perfect little challenge do you not think?
I have had friends in the past who have suffered with Epilepsy and so felt that it was a worthwhile charity to support. My eyes were truly opened, however, when I started to learn more about Epilepsy and visited the Epilepsy Society’s HQ. Seizures in relation to flashing lights are only the tip of the ice berg with there being over 40 different types of epileptic fits.
In December 2013, a Cardiff street collection left me appreciating the work that I was doing after numerous people approached me in the street to donate and tell of their experiences with Epilepsy. Many had lost family members and friends, re-counting how their loved ones had been affected whether it was from losing their driving licence to having seizures that threw them across the room. It was an incredibly humbling experience having strangers approach and describe snippets of their lives. Before deciding to take on the challenge of fund-raising I could only describe myself as ignorant. Did you know that Epilepsy kills? In my prior ignorance I did not know that Epilepsy has a mortality rate of up to 1000 people per year and I bet you didn’t either, did you?
The trip down to the Epilepsy Society’s Head Quarters was inspiring. They provide so much care to those who need it and have brilliant research facilities, which are attempting to find out what triggers seizures and ways to combat it. They do wonderful work and I couldn’t be happier with supporting them.
I am extremely excited for the trek. I love a challenge and this walk will certainly provide it and it is going to be completed with the knowledge that the money that I raise doing it will go towards research and care for those who suffer from Epilepsy.
(Please note, this post was originally posted on my old blog but due to inaccessibility I am reposting here and so please excuse the dates)