A six-strong team of directors and managers from mountain sports retailer Ellis Brigham travelled to Snowdonia to take on an outdoor challenge in the name of a good cause.
The first Youth Adventure Trust (YAT) Hike, Bike & Paddle event, took place last week and involved an 18km climb to the top of Snowdon, a 45km bike ride and a 3km paddle.
Set up some 25 years ago, YAT offers various free outdoor adventures to vulnerable children to help them to acquire the skills and confidence needed to face their personal challenges.
Speaking after the challenge, Marketing Director Mark Brigham said, “This was the toughest challenge I’ve ever done but I’m so pleased we did it and so proud of our team. I’d hoped that there’d be more companies involved in the UK outdoor industry joining us to raise money for such a fantastic charity and I have high hopes for next year that this can become an annual industry get together.”
The total raised from the event is set to be over £12,000 which will be used to support the work of the Youth Adventure Trust.
YAT has stated, ‘We know that our programme is not only making a tangible difference to young people themselves but it is also having a positive effect in the communities and schools where we work. In 2017, our 25th anniversary year, we launched our ambitious plans to double the number of young people by 2021. In 2016 we carried out a Scoping Review, which highlighted 3 areas where we could expand and improve our service.
- We should develop our ‘end of programme’ care so those young people who still need a bit of support can benefit from a tailor-made mentoring scheme and/or apply for a bursary: A new Mentoring Manager has joined the team, and we have been running a pilot mentoring and bursary schemes. Both of which were hugely successful in 2018 and will be expanded in 2019.
- We are not currently reaching all of the main rural towns in Wiltshire, and Swindon has a significant level of deprivation that isn’t reflected in our current provision: We will be offering an additional 40 places on our programme from 2019. We will be working with 7 new schools and increasing the places available to young carers, which means we will be working in all of the most deprived wards in Swindon and Wiltshire.
- There is a need for our service in other parts of the UK. No other charity seems to offer long term intervention for vulnerable young people at such an early age: We intend to expand our service into a neighbouring county, with a plan for 40 young people from this new area to begin their Youth Adventure Journey in 2021. We will continue to target areas affected by issues of rural isolation and deprivation.’