A PIONEER reporter is lacing up her walking boots for MIND mental health charity.
Rhian Waller of Rhos on sea, will be celebrating her 26th birthday somewhere on the 177 mile Offa's Dyke trail, which runs the length of Wales.
Rhian will set off from Chepstow in south Wales on May 15 and hopes to reach Prestatyn before the end of the month.
She said: “I chose to support MIND, because the charity offers practical help including confidential phonelines, grants and advice. It also campaigns to raise the profile of mental health issues.
“Chances are, you already know someone who has suffered with a mental illness. Many sufferers have to battle not only the illness and its symptoms, but also the stigma that goes along with it.”
The charity is particularly close to Rhian’s heart, as her mother Gill used to work as a psychiatric nurse.
Rhian said: “I was also inspired to walk the trail by my great grandfather, who went by foot from North Wales to South Wales to find work in the pit valleys - and if he hadn't done so and met my great grandmother, I wouldn’t be here.”
“I’m a bit nervous because I don’t have a very good sense of direction, and I’m a bit worried I won’t be able to cope with a 20-mile a day walk - but fortunately I have back up. One of my friends is giving me a compass and teaching me how to use it!”
Rhian hopes to raise more than £200 for her charity.
She said: “I won’t be home for my birthday, so I’m asking people to give a £3 donation instead of buying me a pint.”
To donate, visit: www.justgiving.com/rhian-waller0.