Wednesday, 6 July 2022
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Wednesday, 6 July 2022

Children Today: Loyd takes on charity challenge for disabled children

22-year-old Loyd Wildridge, who suffered brain damage as a young child is taking on Children Today’s charity challenge to help other disabled children and young adults get more mobile. 

He decided to take part in the charity’s inclusive event the ‘Wheely Great Challenge’, which aims to raise £10,000 to help disabled children and young adults unlock access to exercise and sport.

Emma Prescott, charity director at Children Today, explained:

“Those with a disability are twice as likely to be inactive as able-bodied children, which is why we’ve launched the ‘Wheely Great Challenge’ this year to help disabled children and young adults be more active. 

“We know that getting regular exercise can be more difficult for those with a disability. Access to sporting groups and equipment can be a challenge in itself. So, it’s vital that they have access to their own equipment and get the support they need to stay fit and healthy.”

Children Today funded an adapted trike for Loyd to help with his rehabilitation after an operation on both his legs in 2016. The trike helped Loyd rebuild his core strength and build up his leg muscles through gentle exercise. 

So, Loyd has chosen to walk 10 kilometres in 10 different towns throughout Cheshire and Merseyside – including Ellesmere Port, New Brighton, Port Sunlight, Birkenhead, Chester and Liverpool – throughout June. 

Helen, Loyd’s mum said:

“When Loyd was six he suffered a number of seizures and was put into a medically induced coma. It was a really scary time for us as a family. We really thought we might lose him and at one point we were told to prepare for the worst.  

“Thankfully Loyd pulled through, but he was left with irreversible brain damage. He was unable to walk or talk, but over the years he’s slowly relearned these skills. He can still only walk short distances though and he occasionally uses a wheelchair, as he tires easily, so this is a big challenge for Loyd. 

“But he has heart of gold and always wants to try and help others, which is why he’s set himself this challenge and is aiming to raise £300 for Children Today.” 

Amazingly, Loyd is only part way through his challenge and has already doubled his target, raising £600 so far. 

Helen continued:

“In spite of his challenges, Loyd’s incredibly active and loves all kinds of sports. He enjoys playing football and boccia with the Special Olympics and he understands all too well how adapted equipment can help anyone with a disability become more active.”

Understandably, Helen couldn’t be prouder of Loyd’s achievements. She said:

“I’m so very proud of Loyd. We’re looking forward to helping him take on this challenge. You’ll never walk alone, son!”

To show your support for Loyd and make a donation, please visit: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/h-wildridge

Emma Prescott added:

“The ‘Wheely Great Challenge’ is all about challenging yourself to help others. For some that may be a 10K run or taking on an epic cycling challenge, while for others, it may be something simpler.   

“Loyd has whole-heartedly embraced this ethos. He’s an absolute inspiration, and proof that the ‘Wheely Great Challenge’ really is for everyone regardless of ability.

“It’s safe to say that Loyd holds a very special place in our hearts here at Children Today. Anyone who has met him can’t help but be moved by his zest for life and kind-hearted nature. We’re behind you all the way Loyd!”

For more information about Children Today’s ‘Wheely Great Challenge’ please visit: https://www.childrentoday.org.uk/activities/the-wheely-great-challenge/

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