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Age Concern's annual challenge shows life does not end at 50

Brave members of the Age Concern team get ready to abseil.
Brave members of the Age Concern team get ready to abseil. / T. B.
  • Supporters of the charity came together to abseil down the side of a Benalmádena hotel to raise awareness of loneliness and isolation

Age Concern Fuengirola/Mijas hosted its annual fundraising challenge on Wednesday and, as in previous years, members and supporters of the charity came together to take part in the hair-raising escapade.

Previous adventures have included a sky jump and a cross-border zip wire flight. This year, the daredevil group of adventure-seekers abseiled down the side of the Sunset Beach Hotel in Benalmádena Costa to raise awareness of the problems of isolation and loneliness.

Age Concern, whose motto is 'life does not end at 50', had enlisted the expertise of Estepona-based firm TUUR to oversee the challenge and to ensure everyone's safety.

The brave participants stepped off the top of the hotel using the same technique employed by climbers to descend hazardous mountain terrain, but not everyone grasped the procedure: several descended at various different angles, but all made it safely to the ground to pick up their souvenir achievement certificates.

Joel Ruiz, a 22-year-old Londoner who was raised in Malaga, has had plenty of experience in adventure activities and he is also passionate about helping local charities and causes. Joel, whose mother Tracy also participated, had heard about the challenge from his parents and decided to take part.

"I have done various adventure activities in the past and I thought that it would be good to participate today and offer my support to a worthy cause," Joel explained to SUR in English.

Jack Rogers, 73, participated in last year's challenge and he was also keen to shimmy down the side of the building to show that senior citizens can still enjoy an active life.

"I think last year's event was a little more demanding, but I've always wanted to abseil, so I thought I would give this a go this year," Jack said.

President David Long showed his admiration for the participants by saying; "I think that everyone has been bloody marvellous.

"We have a whole new crew this year, apart from one member, and it's great to witness their enthusiasm and commitment."