We’re in training to reach the peak of fitness, in order to raise vital funds for a cause very close to our hearts.
In July, an ActiveQuote team is taking on the Welsh 3 Peaks Challenge, tackling the summits of Snowdon, Cadair Idris and Pen y Fan within 24 hours to raise money for The Daisy Garland.
The charity, which is dedicated to helping children with drug-resistant epilepsy, gave invaluable support to the family of our CEO Rob Saunders when his son, Samuel, was diagnosed with the condition. Now, in return, we want to put our best feet forward to support the organisation and the fantastic work it does for families in the UK.
Samuel, now six, started having seizures at just six months old. His condition was finally diagnosed shortly after his second birthday, but it took a further 12 months for Rob and his wife Hayley to find an anti-epileptic drug (AED) that helped to control his seizures.
Rob said: “During this difficult period, my wife and I experienced the most terrifying anxiety and frustration as we tried and failed to secure a diagnosis and care plan to help. When Samuel was three, we thought we’d found an AED to control his seizures, as he went just over nine months without an episode. However, as we were soon to learn with epilepsy, just when you take one step forward, it inevitably ends with two in the opposite direction.”
At the height of Samuel’s seizures, the family was given an alarm by The Daisy Garland, allowing his seizure activity to be monitored throughout the night and giving Rob and Hayley the time to intervene. Samuel has now been seizure-free since November 2019, following surgery at Great Ormond Street Hospital.
“We still have a long way to go as we wean Samuel off his medication over the next 12 months,” said Rob. “However, we are among the lucky ones as we have every reason to be optimistic that we can now find a way of helping Samuel manage his condition long term.”
Our mountain mission was the idea of protection consultant Jordan Costas, who, with sales support manager Tracy Carwardine, arranged a meeting to discuss with staff what the challenge involves. Jordan said: “We have already recruited 25 members of staff to take part, which is a great number, plus drivers. ActiveQuote has kindly pledged to pay for all transport and accommodation, meaning that the £100 minimum sponsorship required by each participant will go directly to The Daisy Garland, which as a company we feel passionate about supporting.
“It is advised that practise climbs are completed before the day to ensure we are fully prepared, so between us, we will be sure to arrange a few group climbs up Pen y Fan in preparation for the real thing. We have stressed to those taking part that the pace does not matter; it’s the taking part that counts and the health and safety of staff is vital. We will be encouraging all involved to go at a pace they feel comfortable with.
“The hard work will start with the 3am wake up call! I’m sure emotions will be running high once we all finally complete the challenge and get to see our families, who will be waiting at the bottom of Pen y Fan for our safe arrival.”
More than 600,000 people live with epilepsy in the UK, with around half still experiencing seizures. With improved treatment, an estimated 100,000 additional people could be seizure-free.
Our Welsh 3 Peaks Challenge will take place on Saturday, July 4, with the team travelling to Llanberis the day before. You can help the hikers on their way by donating to The Daisy Garland here!