By Sophie Perry
A Wolverhampton man with clubfoot who was told he would be in a wheelchair by now is planning to walk the Jurassic Coast to raise money for charity.
Ryan Eddowes, of Hopton Crescent, is planning to walk the entire 96-mile length of the World Heritage Site from Devon to Dorset between May and June 2021.
The 24 year-old will use his walk to raise money for Steps, a charity supporting children and families worldwide affected by conditions which have an impact on the lower limbs, such as clubfoot.
He said: “One in 1000 babies are born every year with clubfoot and there is not enough information out there.”
Ryan only recently learned of the Ponseti method – a non-invasive treatment for clubfoot – after undergoing numerous operations throughout his life.
He said: “It is actually such easy treatment to it sort out but because I have been through the operations I now have a lifetime of pain, whereas people have the Ponseti method hardly have anything.”
Ryan, a wildlife filmmaker and Educational Officer at West Midlands Safari Park, was told by specialists he would be wheelchair bound by his mid-twenties.
He said: “When I was younger, I was told it would not be possible for me to work with animals.
“However, going to university, studying zoology, travelling the world filming animals and working in zoos; I have defied their expertise that said I couldn’t go and do those things.”
Ryan’s passion for the natural world means he also hopes his walk will bring attention to climate change and its effects on the British coastline.
In July, Ryan was featured on ITV News picking up litter and PPE waste in his local park, he plans to do a similar litter pick during his walk along the Jurassic Coast.
Ryan wants to see how many bags of rubbish he can pick up during his 96-mile journey to highlight the human impact on our coastline.
He aims to complete his walk by the first week of June, which is Clubfoot Awareness Week.