Ray shares why he's hiking to the summit of Snowdon/Yr Wyddfa
to fundraise for Child Bereavement UK

The support from Child Bereavement UK was an absolute godsend and I will be forever grateful to the charity which is why I took on this challenge to raise money for an incredible organisation.  

I raised funds for Child Bereavement UK this year by hiking to the summit of Snowdon/Yr Wydda, the highest mountain in Wales, taking the Llanberis Path to the top. 

I was inspired to fundraise because of the support my boys received from the charity after they lost their mother to cancer, a heartbreaking and devastating time for all my sons. 

The younger two boys came to live with me from Essex, where they had lived with their mum. The youngest Harvey was ten years old and the reality of it all hadn’t really sunk in, even though he was heartbroken and understood fully what had happened. He was thirteen when his grief really set in; he started going off the rails at school and going into himself at home, sinking lower and lower.

School introduced us to Child Bereavement UK, and Harvey started sessions with a bereavement support practitioner. Over a period of eight months, the support really turned him around and possibly saved his life. Everything changed! He became a star pupil, mapping out career options and getting top marks and great reviews for his behaviour on an almost daily basis. 

Harvey is now in Year 10 and the fabulous reports keep coming in, and his behaviour is excellent. The support from Child Bereavement UK was an absolute godsend and I will be forever grateful to the charity which is why I took on this challenge to raise money for an incredible organisation.

The hike was good but tough. I didn't have a chance to do much preparation so it was hard going at times but enjoyable too. The biggest challenge on the day was the weather; it was absolutely glorious and 25 degrees, very nice if you're heading to the beach, but tough going if you're heading up the tallest mountain in Wales!

In terms of the highlights of the day, the first was taking on this challenge with Harvey - he's the reason for the hike in the first place, so having him there was fantastic. Another highlight was getting to the Copa summit which is not the actual summit but is where all the paths meet. At that point, I knew that the last bit was fairly easy and that we were going to reach the top comfortably.

My aim in taking on the challenge was to give something back to an organisation that helped my son more than we could ever have imagined. I feel proud of what we both did in terms of the challenge and the money raised, but a massive thing for me was raising awareness for the charity -  that was a big goal achieved .

My fundraising was all done through Just Giving for this challenge, but I'm a landscape photographer and am looking at putting some of my images up for raffle on my images page on Facebook and Instagram to add to the funds, so watch this space!

The support from Child Bereavement UK was excellent. I could contact the team whenever I needed help, for instance when I needed to put my original date for the challenge back by one month due to a family bereavement. They also sorted out the t-shirts we needed very rapidly.

If anyone else is thinking of fundraising, just do it! If you feel strongly for a good cause, it's a fabulous thing to do. Tell your story and show your passion for the cause – get that across to everyone that you speak to during your fundraising. Social media is now the most powerful way to communicate with a high number of people, so use it and use it well.

If you have been inspired to take on a challenge for us, please visit our challenge events page, contact our fundraising team on [email protected] or call us on 01494 569048.