My name is Max, I am 11 years old and live in North Devon. I love rugby and being outside. When I grow up I want to be a rugby player or an adventurer. I have been camping out in my garden for a year.
Tell us about your journey so far?
Before my friend Rick died he gave me a tent and made me promise to have an adventure. When the first lockdown came in March 2020 I realised that all the Hospice shops had closed and their fundraising was cut so I decided to camp out for the North Devon Hospice who looked after Rick and allowed him to die peacefully at home. It’s now March 2021 and I’m still out there! I have currently raised over £146,000 and I am organising a huge camp out at the end of March which all children can join so am hoping this will go up. It is to raise awareness of children’s mental health and show people what children can achieve if they all work together.
Tell us about your biggest obstacles?
It was strange at first to be outside by myself but I am used to it now. Sometimes I would get scared in the middle of the night but I have learned to calm myself down and tell myself that it’s ok and that the noise is just an animal. The cold and the rain have been challenging, I have lots of layers to keep warm and I have to take my sleeping bag and blankets inside each day so they can dry out. We have had a few storms too, I don’t mind the wind too much (although for storm Bella on Boxing Day Dad slept out with me to weigh the tent down) but I hate thunder and lightning. They are scary.
Who inspired you to find courage and determination?
My Dad is a Royal Marine and they never give up. He has always taught me three main things, kindness, integrity and try hard (KIT) so I try and remember this when it gets hard. I also think great adventurers like Bear Grylls and Steve Backshall and ask myself what would they do?
Most important thing.
If it gets tough then it is really important to keep going. Even when my tent has got wet or I have been scared I have never given up and gone back inside. It is sometimes hard but I now know that I can cope and I feel really proud of what I have done.
What is your dream adventure?
I really want to have a proper adventure and camp somewhere other than my garden! I would love to camp in Madagascar and see the lemurs or go to Australia.