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Carers VIC and Gateway Community Service


Dear Irene,


We write in support of the Parkinson’s Challenger program which we have been involved in since February this year.


Athol’s statement of support:

Thank you Irene for bringing the Challenger program to this region.


In my earlier years I was a young guy who was “full on” in health and involved in several sporting programs.


Thanks to you and the Parkinson program, and the addition of the heavier program with weights and conditioning, I am now getting back the energies I had. I feel more confident with my balance and mobility, and ensure that I now walk a minimum of 10,000 steps every day. I have an added health problem with cancer, and my oncologist advised me to take up exercise and weights to assist me in maximising the treatment I am having for cancer.


I am grateful to you and the staff for providing this program and I will be pleased to continue if the program is able to be funded.  (Athol Leach)


Lynette’s statement of support:

I attend the Challenger program with my husband as a support to him and carer. I have thoroughly enjoyed the relationships that have developed with the staff, and the other participants. We all encourage each other. I have been able to talk with some of the other carers and we understand the frustrations and demands on us at different times. The program provides an outlet, both physically and socially. I am able to forget other responsibilities and focus on the activities. I have been able to see when Athol has a problem with a particular activity or movement, and we can concentrate on improving that aspect. I enjoy the exercises and the challenge of doing new activities.


The Challenger program is very successful because of the supportive staff who supervise all activities. We have learnt new aspects about Parkinson’s and have received very helpful and professional advice about balance and what to do to rectify some of the mobility problems that Athol experiences from time to time.


I am very grateful for the opportunity to participate and hope it is able to continue. (Lynette Leach)


Yours sincerely,


Lynette (carer) and Athol Leach (Parkinson’s participant)

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