Ryan Harris, a 22-year-old caregiver trainee, has been helping Alwyn Humphrys, 44, who has schizophrenia, prepare for a half marathon for almost a year ago. Both of these men live in Wales.
Since Harris meet Gwm Celyn Nursing Home in Arbertillery, he daily has been traveling for hours in order to train Humphrys. According to Harris, he has been helping Humphrys in order to spread mental illness awareness. His goal is to be able to raise at least €1,000 so he could donate the money to Mind, an organization dedicated to helping people with mental diseases.
But there is also another reason why he wants to help his friend. Harris lost his grandfather recently due to dementia, and according to the young man, his grandfather was a normal human being no more than two years ago. But Harris was ignorant and naive and had negate preconceptions about mental diseases. He admits that he never visited his grandfather while at the nursing home due to fear. He feared seeing in to what his grandfather has transformed. But after doing research, he learned a lot about mental illnesses. This is why Mind is dear to his heart since this organization’s website enlightened his mind. Harris and Humphrys are training for the Cardiff Half Marathon.
Being an exercise enthusiasts, Harris is aware of the benefits that exercise has on the mind. Harris thinks that exercise is the most underrated treatment for mental illnesses. Both Harris and Humphrys motivate and help each other. According to Harris, he sees Humphrys as an idol. Humphrys has been inspiring Harris in his personal and professional goals. In contrast, Humphrys has also been helped tremendously by Harris. For example, Humphrys a a few weeks ago could not swim at all. Currently, he can swim considerable distances without that much effort.
Family members of Humphrys have already meet with Harris, thanking him for his help. Harris has had a radical positive impact on Humphrys, improving considerably his quality of life. Harris hopes that what is happening between him and his friend gets more covered by the media since he wants the public to be more aware of how mental illnesses can impact peoples’ lives. Humphrys is from Blaenau Gwent, and Harris is from Barry. Both men look forward to the marathon, and they plan on arriving on the finishing line together.