Lauren and her dad did a skydive for Beat in April 2019 – read about her experience below.
What made you sign up to do a skydive in aid of Beat?
I wanted to show my thanks to Beat for the incredible support they offer to people suffering from eating disorders, as well as the support they provide to their families. I looked to their online resources when I was ill, and their social media in particular really helped me. Their positive words for recovery and encouraging posts on Instagram helped me; in particular on my worst days when I was really struggling, they give me that little extra push to keep going. I wanted to help them in raising awareness and raise much needed funds for them. A skydive seemed like the perfect way to do this.
What was your experience of fundraising and what support did you receive from Beat?
I enjoyed fundraising; the feeling each and every time someone made a donation and I received their lovely words of encouragement - I was so grateful! Family, our friends and work colleagues helped spread the word and gain us more sponsorship than we thought possible. Beat were incredibly supportive in that they got in touch me with straight away and offered advice and help in gaining sponsors, sending out a fundraising pack that included a wonderful Beat t-shirt. They kept in contact with me along the way via both email and phone and I was so grateful for this. Also knowing how much it meant to Beat and how grateful they were made me more determined to raise more and more. I hope I managed to do Beat proud.
How did it feel having your dad by your side?
It helped me relax; he was such a great support for me. He wanted to do the skydive from the get-go and seeing him be so calm and relaxed about it helped keep me calm. It was great to do it with my dad and I felt so proud of him for doing it also – I will always remember being able to share in the skydive moment with him.
What worked for you in terms of fundraising?
Social media was a fantastic tool, and work colleagues, both dad’s and mine. Now that I am in a much better place, I want to share my story to help others and speak up about this on my social media channels – I was able to do this alongside my skydive, continuing to raise awareness and help generate sponsorship.
What are your highlights of the skydive experience?
When the parachute opens and you realise that you’re flying in the sky, it’s incredible! The weather on the day we did it was so beautiful and the location was right along the coast – truly stunning surroundings and I could see it all from above! It was a moment I won't forget and I just kept saying, 'It's so beautiful, it's so beautiful!" It felt so free, exciting and emotional all in one! Amazing!
Advice to others considering it...
Go for it! It is such a scary but amazing thing to do. The fear is good; it makes the build up so exciting, but when you do it and you realise what you have just done – such a wonderful feeling! And you will be so proud of yourself and most likely want to do it again! It all happens so fast, so make sure you take every second of it in and be in the moment!
Sum up the experience in three words.
Truly Incredible, Emotional and Breathtaking :) <3