Portsmouth motivational speaker gears up to tackle Three Peaks - and plans to do a headstand on each one

A CHARITY trustee is tackling a new challenge head-on to help people to get the opportunities he never got.

Tuesday, 6th October 2020, 12:30 pm
Gethin Jones, from Southsea, during his training for the Three Peaks headstand challenge
Gethin Jones, from Southsea, during his training for the Three Peaks headstand challenge

Gethin Jones, who runs Unlocking Potential, is taking on the Three Peaks Challenge – but will also perform a headstand at the highest point in England, Scotland and Wales.

He is raising money for Flying Solo, a charity that helps provide opportunities for Portsmouth young people leaving care homes or foster families.

The 49-year-old, from Southsea, was once in a position where he was leaving the care system and found that the lack of support and access to resources caused him to fall down a slippery slope.

Gethin Jones, from Southsea, during his training for the Three Peaks headstand challenge

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Now Gethin, who is a trustee of the charity, runs his business to help people like him to get the most out of their lives through motivational talks in prisons and support for young offenders.

Gethin said: ‘This is close to my heart as I too was a care leaver and truly understand what it is like to find your way in the world when leaving children's homes or foster care. When I left care in the late 80s it was a daunting experience and in truth I did not always have the guidance I needed.

‘I got to a place where I stopped trusting adults and stopped building relationships because deep down I felt they would not last. This way of being meant that I made a lot of bad choices that led to me going to prison and becoming a dependent heroin user. I would like to say that fast forwarding 30 years things have changed, but unfortunately they have not.’

Gethin Jones, from Southsea, has been training for the Three Peaks headstand challenge

He is hoping to raise £1,000 to allow him and other previous care leavers to do more work to help people when leaving their care families, including allowing them to meet up with friends and families.

He said: ‘A care leaver is more likely to listen and trust another care leaver because they have been there. We know that peer support works, we have seen it with substance misuse and crime, the hope of a better life comes from those that walked the path before them.’

The challenge has been backed by the charity, as well as Shaping Portsmouth and Portsmouth City Council.

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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