Stewart Bondi, Trustee (voluntary)
I am first and foremost a mountaineer. I first started climbing in 1974 and have since climbed extensively throughout the UK. I spent a number of years as the local rep for the BMC (British Mountaineering Council) then serving as chairman of the SW committee for three years. I was also chairman of the South Devon Mountaineering Club for three years and spent some 12 years as an active member of the Dartmoor Rescue Team. I hold the Mountain Leaders Certificate, gained at Plas y Brenin and been a leader/instructor on two expeditions to Iceland. My mountaineering experience includes climbing a significant number of Scottish Munroes, many in winter conditions, soloing the Cullin Ridge, and climbing a number of mountains in the Alps, including the Eiger and Mont Blanc. I was a coach for the British Orienteering Federation and spent a number of years coaching juniors in the SW. I have competed in around 50 Mountain Marathons, planning the Original Mountain Marathon (previously known as the KIMM) in 2010 on Dartmoor. In 1995 I completed the Bob Graham Round inside 24 hours (42 Peaks, 72 miles and 27,000’ ascent in the Lake District) and in 2008 the Ultra Trail du Mont Blanc (103 miles through 3 countries) inside the time-limit of 48 hours. Fell Running and so running became a natural development of my enjoyment of the mountains, which has also resulted in my becoming an experienced skier. I have been very very impressed at how able disabled people become when skiing.
And then I met Colin Edwards…… Another trustee of PORT-ER. He joined in with the local hash house harriers while increasing his fitness for a trek to Everest Base Camp. Seeing his “disability” I assumed he would be with us for a short time, as hash trails go over the roughest and hardest of terrain. He proved me wrong. As he trained he gained in confidence and ability to manage all the demands of long distance running. He was and still is an inspiration. I helped to support him on his many projects and my photography and videoing skills have been of value to PORT-ER. Having been inspired by how able disabled people can be I have been delighted to offer my skills and experience in both video work as well as providing access to my experience as a runner, climber and mountaineer. I hope in the future to have the pleasure of helping others with disabilities to take part in some of the sports that I can help with (although be warned, if a ball is involved I will likely fall flat on my face).
Colin Edwards, Trustee (voluntary)
My name is Colin Edwards and amongst other things I’m a trustee of PORT-ER, so here’s a little bit about me. I’m 58 years old and live in the Teign Valley, Devon until recently I farmed my own farm but had to sell it about 12 years ago I now subcontract, do fencing, landscape, gardening and generally anything outside.
I have been a trustee of PORT-ER for the last six years. I am, a below knee right leg amputee and had my amputation about 17 years ago. The amputation was as result of a motorcycle accident I had when I was 20 but at that time the surgeons managed to save my leg but the resulting problems I had from the accident meant that I had many problems with my right leg because of lack of motor movement, hyper sensation and lack of circulation. Initially when I was younger didn’t cause so many problems although it was particularly un-sightly.
The ever increasing problems I was experiencing with my leg, led to a surgeon suggesting amputation, but the decision has to be made by oneself, so I am a elective amputee which in the views of some carries a stigma. After a initial miserable first five years as an amputee, technology changed, and I could catch my sheep again!
Now I do a lot of running mainly cross country and have done a few expeditions one to base camp Everest and one to Cotopaxi, the highest active volcano in the world. My running interests in conjunction with being an amputee have led me to some pretty extreme events like the Grizzly and two years ago I ran the South West Coastal path, 630 miles in five weeks raising nearly £10,000 for Porter.
I’m very passionate about equality for amputees but believe amputees have to gain their own equality.
Heidi Liese Farress, Trustee (voluntary)
I have been a trustee for PORT-ER for nearly two years. My background is in childcare and early years development and education.
My interest in PORT-ER came through my partner who is a below the knee amputee and having attended and helped with fund raising events and work shops
Elaine Jackson, Trustee (voluntary)
Becoming involved in PORT-ER was largely due to my friendship with Diana and my desire to support both Diana and Sandy, who I met through this friendship. I offer help by supporting events where possible and raising money through collection boxes.
I truly believe in the values and objectives of this young, but valuable charity and I am honoured to be a Trustee.
Getting together with the other PORT-ER ‘family’ members is always rewarding, whether it be at a meeting, event or fund raising evening – which I would highly recommend to anyone as they are not only great fun but critical to the ongoing support that PORT-ER needs to help even more worthy causes.
In my spare time I enjoy walking, reading and meeting up with family and friends.
Margaret Prentice, Trustee and Treasurer (voluntary)
Hi, I am the financial director of the family Transport firm and have been for more years than I care to remember. Being a mum to two children (who are now grown up), life is still hectic but enjoyable, especially with two miniature daschunds to walk.
I help voluntary with children at church and have done since 1983. Supporting the development of children’s lives is inspirational to me and my passion. This motivated me to complete my degree in Health and Social care through the Open University and after seven long years I graduated!
I have always been aware of PORT-ER through Sandra Sexton a trustee and when they had a need for someone to keep financial records, I volunteered. The accounts are managed methodically alongside my own work commitments. I also have helped at some events and my favourite being, bag packing on Christmas Eve!
Sandra Sexton, Trustee & Chairperson (voluntary)
I am passionate about prosthetics and orthotics (bordering on obsession!). I have my own consultancy business and work with the International Society for Prosthetics and Orthotics as ISPO Grant Manager for a developing country program funded by the United States Agency for International Development. This project sees me managing a scholarship program for training clinicians in prosthetics and orthotics; conducting an impact assessment following up graduates and their patients in developing countries; and liaising with the World Health Organization in developing new Guidelines for prosthetics and orthotics services. I also deliver other UK based consultancy including teaching and strategic review and am delighted to support PORT-ER through sponsorship and time from my company Rehabskills Ltd.
Prior to October 2010 I was Director of the National Centre for Prosthetics and Orthotics at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow. Before my University career, between 1988 and 2000 I worked in NHS or private prosthetic and orthotic services in Scotland, Norway and England and eventually left lovely Devon to live in lovely Lanarkshire where I am settling down at last!
I qualified as a prosthetist/orthotist back in 1988 and over the course of my career, I am proud to have been involved in professional affairs and have served on a number of committees to help advance my profession. In my personal life I am family and community oriented and a registered care support workers for three children under 7 years.
Our secretary has just stepped down and this role is vacant. We are discussing a replacement.