Walking challenge to raise funds for Chichester’s The Point centre

Christine Gay and Jo Godwin
Christine Gay and Jo Godwin

Two women are taking on a walking challenge to raise funds for The Point Scope Centre in Chichester.

Christine Gay’s brother John has attended this centre for many years. Along with her friend Jo Godwin, Christine will be walking 100km of the Cotswold way from Bath to Cheltenham.

This challenge, which will take place on June 30, will be raising money to help the centre buy a defibrillator.

The Point Scope Centre supports young adults aged from 18 to 45 years with a physical disability across the western region of West Sussex

Christine said: “We chose this walk as we did the Thames Path 100k last year for the British Heart Foundation as I had a heart attack in 2012. That walk was flat and we fancied a hilly challenge, we may regret that! We have started training and we use the local southdowns area for our training walks.”

Christine’s mum, Mary Benwell, said: “When John returned home from full time education he started attending The Point West Sussex.

“Initially he started using their door to door minibus service. With their support and guidance, he is now a confident user of bus services.

“He uses this not only for attending The Point but for other journeys as well.

“This was the start of confidence building which led to him being ready to leave the family home and live independently.

“This he does well with a daily carer and support from family.

“His attendance at the centre is very important for socialising and he has made some great friendships there. Without this he would be quite isolated.

“It has also made him aware of other people’s needs and will help them if he can.

“The centre run a varied programme of activities. Many of the trips and activities would be very difficult to arrange on your own.

“Nothing is compulsory- you decide. This creates an atmosphere to encourage independence and gain confidence, this has been excellent for John, getting him to try things he may have been reluctant to attempt.

“Clients are encouraged to suggest activities making it personal to them. They have excellent computing facilities available, after some basic tuition at college John has furthered his computer studies with excellent guidance from staff.

“Everything is aimed at individual needs and abilities. Without this facility a lot of individuals would be leading very different lives.”

To support Christine and Jo on their walk and to donate to their fundraising, visit their JustGiving page at www.justgiving.com/fundraising/christine-gay2.