Message from Bluebell Wood Super Trooper

This is a copy of an e-mail which was received from a participant of the Bluebell Wood Survival challenge and heard about our Operation Pathfinder programme. It is such a strong message it needs to be shared.

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I just wanted to drop you an email wishing you every success with your business plan.

This weekend was absolutely fantastic and I really do think that in addition to giving people the opportunity to experience something so out of the ordinary, you really could help a lot people.

Unfortunately I was raised on a estate where it was commonplace, if not expected, that by the time I reached 16 I would have a conviction or ASBO. My father was a heroin addict and my mother an alcoholic. Thankfully I was blessed with enough determination to put myself through University and finally get my position as a Trainee Solicitor just last week, but I grew up around so many who sadly were not so driven, fell by the wayside, and could not get themselves on to the right track. Teachers in school had no concept of life as their students knew it, and instead of being taught how to function as an adult, children were processed to become either an 'A-C' student, or not worthwhile. 

What the programme you offer does is strip everyone of what they have or don't have. Council house tenants don't come with a stigma, and Mercedes drivers are absent of superiority. No person is for themselves, they can't afford to be no matter how large their bank balance. Rather than identifying people's differences as a weakness or reason not to connect, differences are identified as strengths, which when put together amount to a solid unit. I find myself wondering why the real world doesn't adopt this attitude?

This is why I think your work would help change so many people's attitude and I really hope you get the funding and support for the level you want to take your work to. I'm not suggesting it's a solution to every problem, and not all people come away changed, but it would be a definite move in the right direction, and something we could aspire to.

I'd like to thank you, and all the lads on this weekend for being absolutely awe inspiring. The knowledge and skill I witnessed surprised and impressed me at every step. 

Good luck.

Children's Hospice benefits from the brave

Blue skies and a gentle breeze welcomed 19 supporters of Bluebell Wood Children's Hospice to the beautiful Cumbrian countryside to raise money for the leading North East charity.

Motivated by the desire to raise funds for the children hospice, the 8 men and 11 women team came to pit their skills and mental ability against former member of the UK’s most renowned Special Forces regiment.

One participant said “This weekend was absolutely fantastic and I really do think that in addition to giving people the opportunity to experience something so out of the ordinary, you really could help a lot people.”

All money raised from the challenge will go to provide care and support to children with life limiting conditions who are not expected to reach adulthood.

Everyone gave one hundred percent to each challenging task that was set and well and truly earned every penny pledged by their supporters.

Greatest challenge of her life

When Deborah Smith’s son was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes she vowed she would do whatever she could to raise money to help fund research into the disease.

Little did she realise at that time that this pledge would see her rough it in the wild with former members of the UK Special Forces and raise over £2,000 for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund.

Deborah said ““I had the most amazing time. It gave me a very tiny glimpse into the life of a soldier and made me realize how utterly brave and committed they have to be.

It was a tough but amazing experience and already I am having withdrawal symptoms.  It made me realise more than ever that I must get my boys out into that amazing world, away from the TV and the Wii, even if it’s just to lie on a field and gaze up at the stars like we did.  I’m missing my Bergen and all that lovely fresh air already!

I want to thank everyone on behalf of myself and my son, Jake, who is delighted you have helped me raise £2,000 for him and the JDRF. Let’s hope it helps it hasten a breakthrough.”

Type 1 diabetes is caused by the immune system attacking the insulin-producing cells of the pancreas, meaning that the body cannot regulate blood-glucose levels on its own. The World Health Organisation estimates that around 220 million people worldwide have diabetes.

Mad May Meander Event an Outstanding Success

Blue skies, a gentle breeze and brilliant sunshine welcomed walkers to Life Survival’s Social Event walk around the beautiful Peak District on Saturday 22nd May.

The social event, entitled Mad May Meander, saw walkers trek across the terrain of the second most-visited national park in the world in temperatures rising to 28oc.  If this wasn’t challenging enough the Life Survival Directing Staff had a few surprises up their sleeves.

Whilst overlooking a popular viewpoint at the start of the walk Directing Staff invited walkers to participate in a 30 metre abseil and rock climb.  With varying levels of support, everyone successfully completed the activities, which left them bustling to enjoy the rest of the day.   

Following the walk around the scenic Peak District, participants visited a local pub for a celebratory meal and a refreshing and well deserved drink.

Walker, Linda Milward, said “What a great day! Enjoyed it so much. I'd just like to thank the team for their support and encourgement; what a great bunch!”

Life Survival’s next social event will take participants for a walk up Snowdon in July (date TBC).  For further information or to register for this event email