Saturday 28 July 2012

Eery Eryri

The "Hafal Family" plus Lib Dem leader Kirsty Williams AM at the Show

A while between posts as I have been without a satisfactory broadband connection all week - so some quick catching up to do...

On Wednesday I'm wilting in scorching weather at the Royal Welsh Show where our Movin' On Up campaign’s classic VW microbus, cinema bus and mobile mountain were a big hit with young people who were also drawn to the campaign stand’s internet facility where they could access mental health-related websites including Hafal’s Young People’s Information Hub and Facebook site.

Hafal’s Young People’s Information Officer John Gilheaney tells me: "Young people were particularly drawn by the fun aspect of the campaign. However, they also showed a great deal of interest in the campaign’s goals and were keen to offer constructive feedback on the work of Hafal’s Young People’s Information Hub. A lot of young people were delighted to hear that Wales has excellent mental health legislation and were keen to take away the literature on display. The level of interest was refreshing given the vigorous campaigning that went on to ensure the Mental Health (Wales) Measure catered for all ages, not solely for those aged 18 and over."

Half way up Snowdon

Then, following a very successful meeting on Thursday of our now substantial team of managers and Trustees in North Wales, it's an early night for me before setting off up Snowdon yesterday to recce our mega-walk on 28 September. This is a worthwhile test as we work out that the psychological pinch-point for participants' morale will probably not be the fatigue encountered three quarters of the way up but rather the first half hour. This involves climbing very steeply out of Llanberis on a narrow tarmac road without any sight of the mountain. We will need to pace people carefully and give reassurance I think! I will post more advice about this in due course but watch out for the booking details on our website next week.

We scout out the places to put check-points and enjoy a coffee at the top in eery, cold and damp cloud before descending back into warm sun-shine. I'm pleased to report I experienced no blisters or other discomfort on the 9 miles of walking but my knees did ache towards the end of five hours driving back to Carmarthenshire (every farmer in Wales is trying to get their hay in so tractors are at every turn). Ho hum, it was a good week and I sleep like a top last night.