Lifestyle change benefits Young Carers MK charity

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St Martin’s Lodge of Freemasons has a long association with the Young Carers MK charity.

So when St Martin’s Lodge member Nick Hills Sands-Potter decided to get his health in check, he decided that his personal battle should also be used to benefit others, specifically Young Carers members.

The charity supports children and young people aged eight to 19 years old who care for a family member because of a number of factors - perhaps a physical or mental illness, disability, drug or alcohol related problem.

Even when services are in place to assist with care, the effects on young carers can be significant.

“Over the past 24 months I’ve lost more than five stone in weight and have another three to go,” said Nick.

“A lot of this has been done with the support and love of my family and friends.

“My original goal was to lose enough weight to be there for my family, but it opened my eyes to how some people can’t enjoy their life in the same way.

“The young carers are youngsters that need to look after other members of their family due to some form of disability.

“Rather than being able to play football with their friends they go shopping, give medication or look after their siblings.

“Young Carers MK is able to give direct support, or some much needed time away from their responsibilities for them to be children again,” Nick explained.

“I decided that part of the drive to help me lose weight and be able to have quality time with my own children, would be to help others have quality time of their own.”

Since making his own lifestyle cyhanges, Nick has completed a 10km cross-country run, the MK Half Marathon - with Nathan Smith also of St Martin’s Lodge, and has another half marathon in his sights for October.

So far, he has raised £580 towards the MK Young Carer Fun Day on June 26.

“Raising funds for this important charity is one of the many varied ways in which Bucks Freemasons’ core values of Friendship, Integrity and Charity are used to benefit all adults and children in our area and underline our commitment to assisting everyone in our community,” Nick added.

St Martin’s Lodge of Freemasons meet at Bletchley Masonic Centre. For more information visit www.buckspgl.org