A Banovallum student is set to jet into to the skies for a charity parachute jump tomorrow (Friday, February 22).
And it’s fitting that Ellie Swinson, 16, has chosen to head up to several thousand feet - as she’s supporting the Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire Air Ambulance.
Ellie, who has always lived in Horncastle, was inspired to head to Skydive Hibaldstow by some advertising she saw in the Original Factory Shop on Boston Road - much to the surprise of her mother, Theresa Swinson.
She said: “It was all her idea - she saw the sign and said ‘Mum, I’m going to do it.’
“It’s a really big thing for her, as she suffers from anxiety.
“To go out of her comfort zone will be a huge achievement.
“She excels at everything, though, so I’m sure she’ll take it in her stride.”
For Ellie, the ambucopter was the obvious choice to inspire her jump.
“I did a bit of research about the charity,” she said, “and was shocked to find out they operate from public donations alone.
“To me, that really isn’t fair.
“I think they should receive government backing as part of the NHS.
“They save so many lives every year and the amount of money they need to operate is astounding.
“Without the Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire Air Ambulance, so many lives could have been lost.
“You never know when you might need them - anyone could at some point.”
With now just one day to go, the GCSE student feels excited, nervous and proud ahead of her sky dive tomorrow.
She said: “I’ve never done anything like this before, but I think it’s going to be fun.
“I only get 20 minutes of instruction beforehand, so hopefully there won’t be any time to worry!
“My friends think I’m mad, but some of them want to have a go, too.”
She said her anxiety could be an obstacle to overcome on the day, but ultimately completing the jump will make her ‘feel stronger’.
“Before the jump might be difficult as I tend to get really stressed.
“But I think while I do the jump I’ll feel out of control in a good way - I won’t even be controlling the parachute.
“I hope I can just let it all happen and enjoy it and come out of the experience even stronger.”
Ellie is hoping to raise £1000 for the charity - and wants to inspire others to take the plunge and support a charity of their choice.
She added: “Not only does it benefit the charities, but it develops your own personal courage, too.”
To donate towards Ellie’s skydive, click here