I’m Scott and I lead the GetFit Wales project for Newydd Housing Association. I recently met with Samyjo Jo Childs after being notified by Christie Williams of Samyjo’s incredible journey. Christe is RCT Yeps Hawthorn’s project leader.
Samyjo was referred to us after experiencing personal trauma. She found it difficult to manage day-to-day in school, at home, and in relationships. Samyjo was reluctant to join the GetFit Wales project but soon became a volunteer and 6th form group leader for the current Year 9 group.
I spoke with Samyjo and she told me that before joining the project, she would spend most of her time in her bedroom watching TV. In school, there was little encouragement to take part in any physical activity and was failing in her schoolwork.
However, throughout the project, Samyjo embraced the challenges set by Christie and GetFit Wales. As a result, she began earning lots of points which helped her turn her life around.
Samyjo started going on little walks with her pet dog, Frankie. Soon, the walks got longer and ventured up mountain trails. She has managed to walk an incredible 931,058 steps since the project began in February 2019. To date, Samyjo’s personal best is 27,384 steps in a day. The project allows a walker to convert steps to points. Points can be spent at a variety of different places in lieu of cash.
Samyjo regularly purchased bags of fresh fruit, salads, and eggs for her and her family using her points. This helped the family with their finances as they would regularly spend up to £30 buying such items from Tesco.
Samyjo went to the gym for the first time at Hawthorn High School recently. She enjoyed the experience and has made a pledge to herself to keep going.
Now in a much better place both physically and mentally, Samyjo has managed to turn her life around. Samyjo has passed year 12 and is now looking to the future where she is focused on going to University to study occupational therapy.
Find out more about GetFit Wales here.