Elaine Revans, a charity worker originally from Stone, is in the final stages of preparing for a personal challenge that will test her mental strength and physical stamina.
The 29 year-old registered for the 2016 Caudwell Children Sahara Desert Challenge last year.
The former University of Gloucestershire student, who graduated in Tourism and Events Management, says that she couldn’t resist the lure of the arid adventure and will fly out to the Moroccan city of Ouarzazate, on the 11th February, to begin a six day fundraising trek through the largest desert in the world.
Caudwell Children, the national charity that provides practical and emotional support to disabled children and their families, has organised the fundraising trek to help the charity deliver specialist equipment, treatments, therapies and short breaks to the 770,000 registered disabled children in the UK.
Elaine, originally from Stone, but now a resident of Meir in the city, admits to having some anxieties about the challenge but says that she is confident that she can complete the potentially arduous trek. She said:
“I’ve not done anything as ambitious as this before in my life! My biggest challenge to date has been a 50 mile bike ride.
“I must admit I’m worried about walking in the heat of the day and I’m not looking forward to the bitterly cold evenings. We don’t even know how far we will be walking as the shifting sands and changing routes make the trek impossible to measure!
“But I’ve always wanted to do a once-in-a-lifetime challenge that would stretch me and put me outside my comfort zone. I never did the gap year travelling thing, like a lot of my friends did before university, and I’ve always been a little envious of them. Finally it’s my time to do something big and adventurous.”
Elaine says that whilst her friends and family are fully supportive of her efforts her mum is already panicking. As she explained:
“She thinks I might get heatstroke! With the possibility of that and the thought of insects; I don’t do creepy crawlies, I’m beginning to get nervous!”
Having paid out £175 to register for the event, Elaine now has less than five weeks to hit her £1,700 fundraising target. As she continued:
“Obviously, I’ve encouraged family and friends to sponsor me. I’ve even done bag packs, bucket collections, an office sweepstake and organised a charity dog walk.
“But I’d love members of the public to support my trek as the money is going to such a worthwhile cause.
“I have to admit I’m slightly biased as I actually work for the charity. So I’ve seen at first hand the amazing support it gives to disabled children across Staffordshire and the UK. The equipment, therapies and treatments that they provide often cannot be accessed through statutory measures, so the provision it gives to families is vital.
”I don’t think that there are many other UK charities that support families with disabled children in the way that Caudwell Children do.”
Although Elaine has travelled extensively across America, Canada, Africa and Europe she believes that trekking across the Sahara is going to be something special.
“It will be a really big tick off my bucket list, I’m so excited.
“Some of my friends think I’m a little mad and are waiting to see if I get on the plane. But honestly, despite a few reservations, I can’t wait for every sun baked, sand filled step that I’m going to take.”
You can support Elaine through her Just Giving page: https://www.justgiving.com/ElainesSaharaChallenge
If you would like to find out more information about the Sahara Desert Trek, or Caudwell Children’s other international challenges email: email@example.com