Daring zip wire duo from Wrexham raise cash for the Stroke Association

Two women will bomb at 100mph down the longest zip wire in Europe in an adrenaline fuelled rush to raise cash for a stroke charity.  

Caring daredevils Gerry Humphries and Alys Griffiths, who both work at the Pendine Park care organisation, Wrexham, will soar for a mile through the air at 500ft above the water at Zip World, Penrhyn Quarry, in Bethesda, in aid of the Stroke Association.

Alys, 22, who conducts musical workshops for residents at Pendine Park, said: “I’m really excited but also a bit scared because I’m not entirely comfortable with heights.

“I think going up the quarry will be fine. Standing at the top, waiting to push myself off will be not great but I think the experience will be amazing.

“The Stroke Association is a really worthwhile charity to do it for because they provide so much support to not only stroke survivors but their families as well. “They’re doing a lot of research into why strokes happen, and how people can be helped in recovery.”

Every year an estimated 150,000 people in the UK have a stroke – that’s one person every five minutes. Most people affected are over 65 but anyone can have a stroke, including children and even babies.

Helping people who have suffered from strokes is a cause close to the heart of Pendine Park activities manager Gerry.

She said: “A stroke can affect people’s day to day living. People can become disabled through a stroke. They may lose part of their memory, their speech, their ability to walk. We deal with people at Pendine Park who have had strokes, and there’s a varying degree of severity.”

“We found out about it by receiving a letter one morning. It had flyer saying about the zip wire challenge to raise money for the Stroke Association, and Alys and I thought why not, we’ll give it a go.

“I’m very much looking forward to it. It’s going to be a big buzz.

Gerry believes giving residents the opportunity to take part in activities is an essential part of taking care of them.

She said:  “My belief is that somebody who happens to be in a care setting, their social life shouldn’t end just because they’re being looked after by someone else. Whatever they want to do while they’re here, we try to accommodate.”

“Pendine Park is a place that attracts community minded people to work.”

Alys, who completed a degree in Psychology at Bangor University in 2011, has loved every minute of working at Pendine Park. The grade eight piano and saxophone player said: “I love being here. I just love going round and seeing all of the different residents every day.

“I’ve been running the music workshop, and just seeing the residents enjoy themselves and really coming out of themselves and dancing around the room has been great.

“You can clearly see that they’re having fun”

“I started playing the piano when I was seven.  So for as long as I can remember really music has been a big part of my daily life.

 “It’s nice to be able to share that with other people, and to be able to use it to help other people to enjoy themselves.”         

To donate please visit www.justgiving.com/pendinezipwire and for more information on the Stroke Association please visit www.stroke.org.uk.

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