Dreamflight is delighted to announcethe Jamega Pro Golf Tour has supported us again this year to send another 192 Very Important Children (VICs) on their h
oliday of a lifetime this October.
The Jamega Tour will took place 10-12 May 2015 at Mentmore Golf and Country Club. The tour was established in 2004 as a fair, open and honest pro golf tour run on behalf of aspiring tournament professionals in southern England. Now in its eleventh year, a series of two-day, 36-hole events provide a competitive challenge for professional and low handicapped amateur golfers.
Patricia Pearce MBE, our founder commented about Dreamflight: “Having started the charity 29 years ago, I cannot believe it is still going strong. It was meant to be a one-off trip but I soon realised there are so many deserving children out there that we carried on.”
One youngster who benefitted from a Dreamflight holiday was Aidan Healey from Leeds. At just nine years of age he was struck down with a rare autoimmune disease, Juvenile Dermatomyositis (JDM), that affects just one in 250,000. Symptoms are joint pain, weak muscles, rashes, tiredness, irritability and fever.
Aidan said: “The illness robbed me of my mobility and I ended up having to use a wheelchair for almost three years. I endured nine months of chemotherapy, countless tablets and many different forms of treatment and have been in and out of hospital more than 100 times.” As a recipient of a Dreamflight holiday in 2009, Aidan found that it wasn’t just a fun adventure but that being away from family, friends and familiar surroundings gave him a sense of independence and a new-found confidence.
Now 20 years old, he continued: “Being with other sick and disabled children made me realise I wasn’t alone and there were others worse off than me. I came back from the trip a different person. Dreamflight really did change my life.” One of the highlights was meeting and having the chance to interview European Ryder Cup star Ian Poulter and it inspired Aidan to focus on his own golf when he returned.
Six years on, when in remission from JDM, he was invited to play in Poulter’s first Dreamflight Charity Golf Day at Woburn Golf Club, and despite the illness returning in 2012 he has continued to spend up to five hours a day practising.
Aidan added: “Through sheer determination and enjoyment, and having never had a golf lesson in my life, I have managed to get my handicap down to two. My motto is never give up, never give in. In October 2015 I will start my PGA training to turn professional and I’ve also been made an official Dreamflight Ambassador. So to anyone out there who may think it is just a trip to Disneyworld, going on some rides and swimming with dolphins, please believe me it isn’t. It really is a life changing experience for the children – and I can vouch for that!” Aidan even competed for the first time as an amateur on the Jamega Pro Golf Tour last season at Mentmore, shooting a solid 79 and 75.
Gary Harris of Jamega Pro Golf Tour said: “Aidan’s story is wonderful example of Dreamflight’s important and inspiring work. Jamega is proud and honoured to continue to offer our support to give more youngsters the chance of a holiday of a lifetime they deserve.”
For more information on the Jamega Pro Golf Tour visit www.jamegatour.co.uk