49 lives saved – going blind at 21 – welcome otto

good morning bigmoose blog reader.

as is sit here in my dark chilly office, thick mountain socks keeping my feet toasty warm this friday morning, it feels like only last week that i was sitting at my laptop one finger typing, igniting my creative side of my brain, trying to entertain, inform, and in some possible way inspire you.

inspire you to join our merry throng of likeminded gooduns, inspire you to expand your horizons, do something positively out of character, do something that scares the bejesus out of you, but after you’ve done it you are proud, and you have expanded your life circle.

14 years ago chloe decided to climb mount kilimanjaro, and aged 15, fundraise £10,000 for childrens charity barnardos, standard stuff for a 15 year old i hope you’ll agree.

on her fundraising journey, we packed peoples shopping in asda, sold confectionery at school events, and sold out the vue cinema in cardiff with an “evening of inspiration” where a team of philanthropic mountaineers, s.a.s. soldiers and other adventurers including one blind adventurer, miles hilton-barber all donated their time and experience to entertain, excite and as the title suggests inspire, and miles moved into hero status in my life when i heard him speak about how he had gone blind aged 21, just imagine how that must make you feel about yourself, about your world, about your life, completely devastating,  but he continued to fight and strive to do more with his life, including many uber cool adventures.

miles spoke about pushing the circle which we all live in, our own circle, mine is different to yours, as all circles are personal, but he continued to speak about always trying to make that circle bigger, whatever our circumstances, and he has inspired me to try to inspire you, if possible, today, tomorrow, or whenever you’re ready. 

but it wasn’t last week, it was last year. 

last december to be precise.

i needed a break, i needed a rest, i needed to look in the mirror and look after myself.

so i stopped blogging for the holiday season, which extended until now, but after some subtle friend prodding i’ve realised that the impact of blogging could possibly hit those three goals i mentioned in my first sentence today.

so here goes, and thanks for coming back and reading.

here is a quick life update, which i will expand upon over the coming weeks.

i went back to nepal to climb mount lobuche, managing to get to 5900m before the decision was made to turn back, as we had run out of time, due to a number of factors, to be continued.

tiffany has given betty my granddaughter, a baby brother, otto, who is a delightful young man already, bringing more grandparent joy into my life, as well as betty who not yet two, can count to 20, and sings the colours of the rainbow in an extremely cute way.

bigmoose is continuing to thrive, with an amazing team that have pulled off three very successful fundraising events in the first half of 2024, including over a thousand runners all running in spotty tees at our inaugural ultra fun run, an emotional sight indeed.

our referrals keep growing month on month, reaching an all time high of 129 for april, so the need for bigmoose to exist is very obvious, and the most amazing bigmoose news is we have had 49, yes 49 people tell us that their therapy has saved their life, as they were on the path to suicide, which i hope you’ll agree is phenomenal work for such a small team, and something we are all so proud of.

so, as the morning light from outside now illuminates my office, i will leave you with a youtube video of miles, extolling the virtues of not trying to control uncontrollable circumstances, but controlling your response. 


and finally, if you or anybody you know needs help with their mental health please reach out here.


or if you wish to help support our work supporting people that are struggling please reach out here.


thanks and blue skies, see you next week.


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