Jaylo Miles regularly scales the highest peak in South Wales, Pen-y-Fan, in the name of raising awareness for sufferers of PTSD, like himself. His unusual companion – emotional support barn owl Louie – keeps him company every step of the way.
What is PTSD?
Post-traumatic stress disorder affects up to 4 out of every 100 people*. People with PTSD often relive traumatic events through flashbacks and nightmares**. The stigma around it can lead to isolation and judgment for many sufferers. Fundraiser Jaylo works to combat this on his page Many Downs, Time To Get Up***. Speaking to photojournalist Joann Randles, Jaylo said “I have built this page from a desperate battle with my own mental health and suicidal thoughts in the hope to make a difference and leave a legacy to create & inspire.”****
Jaylo and his owl Louie hold regular adventures up Pen-y-Fan and encourage others to join in. Although there is no denying that exercise generally has a positive impact on mental health*****, Jaylo says that Louie’s presence is also a factor in improving the mood of the hikers. “People will never know how special Louie is, not just for me but for guys I let hold him,” says Jaylo. “That special moment of love!”
Jaylo hopes that his story can bring some hope for those in a similar situation. “CPTSD, PTSD, mental health sucks. But the journey I’m on will show the way for those in their time of need. Be strong, be honest, be you!”
If you are suffering from PTSD and are seeking support, The Eaves can help by providing specialist therapies such as trauma-focused cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) or eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing (EMDR). Our professionals see individuals of all ages, families, couples and young people 12 hours a day, Monday to Saturday between 9 am and 9 pm. Please call 01483 917000 to speak to a member of the referrals team. You can also send us an enquiry via our website. Click here to find out more.
The Eaves would like to thank Jaylo for allowing us to share his story and image.
***** Deslandes, Andréa, et al. “Exercise and mental health: many reasons to move.” Neuropsychobiology 59.4 (2009): 191-198.