Climbing Everest……………… #EVERISH
Allan Clayton – One man with a Spinal Cord Injury climbing over the equivalent of Mount Everest in 8 months, to raise money and awareness for the charities; Turning Point Counselling Service Brighouse and Spine U.K.
When I was a boy my dad used to call me a Gonna. He used to tell me “you’re gonna do this” and “you’re gonna be whatever you want to be in life”. Well, as it turns out, he may have had a point. In 1999 while studying at Headlands school sixth form college I was involved in a serious road traffic accident leaving me with a broken neck and only 20% chance of walking again…but I decided I was gonna!!! Before my accident I was a sporty kid representing Headlands school, Bridlington Spartans, East Riding, Bridlington Town AFC, Bridlington George and Sewerby Cricket Club. With the help of my Bridlington friends and family I did learn to walk again and now my plan is to put something back into the services that have helped me and others with life changing events. Please read about my personal challenge and I welcome your involvement.
I have set myself a challenge; to climb the equivalent of the height of Everest, around the hills and mountains of the UK in just 8 months.
I will be walking up some iconic UK peaks including Helvelyn, Skiddaw , Snowdon and finishing by attempting to climb Ben Nevis. The combined peaks will be more than the height of Everest. This is going to be a difficult challenge for me. In 1999 I was involved in a serious road traffic accident resulting in a spinal cord injury where I broke C4, C5 and C6 leaving me with just 20% chance of being able to use my limbs again. After spending months in rehab and in a wheelchair, I was lucky enough to manage to learn to walk again. I was told that I would be back in a wheelchair by the time I reach the age of 40. My physical ability now is a day to day struggle. I cannot walk more than 50 yards without a rest and must push through the pain with every footstep. But I want to be able to climb to the views I may not be able to see while I still can. Therefore, I have set myself the challenge of climbing more than the equivalent of 40,000 feet in 8 months as it took me exactly 8 months from my accident to learn to walk again. This really is a mountain of a challenge for me.
My story is one of climbing over the toughest physical and mental challenges, feeling the highest highs and crushing low’s. Now is the time to really see what I can do….and give something back.
I will be raising sponsorship money for two important charities along my journey; Turning Point Counselling Service Brighouse and SPINE UK. It’s obvious why I chose Spine U.K. however at first glance it may not be as clear why I would choose a local counselling service like Turning Point Counselling Service… after my accident I received excellent physical care but nothing to help me process the life changing trauma I had endured, and although I initially thought everything was fine, as the years passed it became apparent things weren’t quite as they should be, to this day I’m still not comfortable as a passenger in a car. After discussing my situation with friends, I realised not only did I not want to feel this way but that I wanted to help and support others who were suffering, and through a chance recommendation I was pointed in the direction of Turning Point Counselling Service.
Turning Point Counselling Service is based in Brighouse where I currently volunteer. Turning Point Counselling Service offers individual confidential counselling to anyone who is suffering, it is a charity that’s been providing mental health and emotional care to Brighouse and surrounding communities since 2001. I have now embarked on my journey to becoming a counsellor, I know it’s going to be a challenge but the opportunity to support others in the future makes all the midnight oil I’ll be burning while studying worth while.
SPINE UK is the ‘voice’ of the Pinderfields Spinal Cord Injured population. I was treated at Pinderfields so would very much like to give something back for the expert care I received.
I would love for people to come along and join me, hopefully raising some much need funds for these important charities and hopefully raising their profile at the same time. If you are interested in joining me or want to donate to these two worthy charities then please get in touch by Facebook #EVERISH or by using the Go Fund Me #EVERISH page, there you will find my contact details, challenge information and information on how to donate. Alternatively contact Turning Point Counselling Service for more information 01484 950808