Meet Blind Foundation client and recreation volunteer Benny Foar.
Last month Benny started two walking groups for Blind Foundation clients and staff in Parnell, Auckland.
Benny runs the Amblers walking group (low intensity) on Mondays and the Striders walking group (high intensity) on Wednesdays. Both groups run during lunchtime to enable staff to participate and facilitate visiting clients to add in an exercise option to their day.
When Benny joined the Blind Foundation, he started to participate in recreation group activities. He found that interacting with other Blind Foundation clients helped ease the sense of isolation that he had been feeling from sight loss.
“I found talking with other clients was the best way to pick up practical tips on meeting with my own challenges. I was often inspired by their willingness to try out something new.”
Benny lives five minutes away from the Auckland Domain which he often calls “his own backyard.” Walking around the Domain and nearby reserves, Benny has become familiar with all the surrounding walking trails. Taking advantage of his local knowledge, the opportunity to guide other clients on walks was offered to Benny.
“When the walks were formalised, I was very pleased and happy to volunteer when asked. The walks fit comfortably into my daily exercise routine and for the clients and staff who take advantage of this opportunity to get some exercise in beautiful surroundings, it’s a win win for all.”
Lisa McCallum, Gym Manager, supports Benny with his walking groups and is proud of what he’s achieved. She says:
“When you set your mind to it; there’s nothing you cannot accomplish the limitation is not believing in yourself.
“Benny is adventurous; he feeds his spirit, trains his body and focuses his mind on his beliefs’. There’s nothing Benny cannot accomplish as he overcomes his fears by following his dreams.”