Graham Povey is one of millions - a Veteran of the British armed forces.
Graham gave more than 14 years of his life to serving in The Parachute Regiment and later as a dog handler. He is immensley proud of his military life. However, like many veterans Graham's life after leaving the Army has proved to be very challenging. He was medically discharged and has battled depression since. He has had many personal difficulties including divorce and separation from his family. He has in his own words "lost everything that was precious to me".
Graham is a trained mountain guide and has always had a very strong love of the outdoors and has spent the last few years in Anglesey and Snowdonia with his dog Shadow, a four year old Husky. Graham has always dreamed of crossing the Pyrenees via the legendary GR11 route which runs for 450km from the Atlantic coast at Irun all the way to the Mediterranean coast at Capel de Crus. The route is extremely challenging and often very wild. However, for much of Graham's life this has remained a dream........... until now.
We first met Graham and Shadow during a challenge on Mount Snowdon last year. He told us then of his love for the mountains and how he finds such peace and enjoyment when up 'in the clouds'. We later found out about Graham's Pyrennean dream and we discoverd not only how much it meant to him but also what it would do for his confidence and well being.
So several months and a lot of planning later........
On Tuesday 26th July we will be driving Graham and Shadow all the way to Paris where they will board a train to Irun. Once there they will embark upon an epic 8 week, unsupported trek from coast to coast. We have funded some very special equipment for Shadow including panniers, harnesses, boots and even some goggles! We've also found funding for their train tickets and food too.
Graham is determined to complete the trek and he and shadow have been training hard for several weeks in Snowdonia. Despite his difficulties and personal battles, Graham is all too aware of the plight of many other veterans and he is determined to raise money to help others.
He and Shadow have set up a fundraising page at www.justgiving.com/grahampovey. You can sponsor One Dog and his Veteran by visiting the page and giving whatever you can.
Graham is also a very keen photographer and will be compiling a photo diary of his amazing trek which he plans to exhibit on his return to raise further funds for The Veterans Charity.
Naturally we will be counting the days and weeks eagerly until we can return to Paris to collect them. If you would like to send good will messages to Graham and Shadow please send them via the website.