On 10th April 2017 I will be setting off for a 7/8-day trek from Chepstow and the banks of the River Severn in South Wales, running solo and unsupported along the route of the ancient Offa’s Dyke path, finally reaching Prestatyn on the North Wales coast.
This is a solo mission to raise awareness of the plight of our young who need the support of responsible adults to be there for their mental well-being before it develops into a crisis point. The system needs fixing, so we can only turn to charities like YoungMinds to bridge the gap, but the support offered is still too limited because there simply aren’t enough professionals available in the system to make that difference. It takes about the same length of time for a mother to have a new child as it does for a child to finally access appropriate counselling and support (or in our case, it’s taking twice that length of time).
Can you imagine going through your entire pregnancy waiting to receive pre-natal care? We wouldn’t accept that level of service, but we do seem to allow it to happen to our children when it comes to giving their minds the support they need.
As parents we want the best for our children, but we aren’t raised as psychologists or psychotherapists, and as parents we also need the support to help our children in crisis. Running the length of Wales is a step towards highlighting the plight of children and parents left out on the trail, alone, trying to figure out the route of support, and without the insight of an expert in this wilderness.
It’s as close a comparison as I could muster.
If you can support the cause, click on the badge link to donate to YoungMinds to help them help our children, and to help us, the parents. In some way, it might work. Though, we really do need more staff, and more funding into the system to pay those staff.
Be sure to check in with me if the idea of Wild Camping and trail trotting along the Offa’s Dyke is your cup of coffee. Here’s a vague itinerary of the week ahead. I hopefully won’t deviate (unless I seriously get lost) and really do hope the weather is kind.
Sunday 28th May—Sunday 4th June (if I can go a bit quicker I’ll aim for getting to Prestatyn by Saturday 3rd. Ever the optimist!)
28th – Sedbury Cliffs—Monmouth
29th – Monmouth—nr Llanthony
30th – nr Llanthony—nr Kington
31st – nr Kington—Churchtown
1st – Churchtown—Llanymynech
2nd – Llanymynech—nr Llangollen
3rd – nr Llangollen—nr Llandyrnog
4th – nr Llandyrnog—Prestatyn