Lowestoft teenager’s inspirational bike ride

It wasn't too long ago that, by his own admission, Louis Carr was lacking drive and direction.

Low on confidence and 'mixing with the wrong crowd', he was in danger of going off the rails.

However, the teenager from Pakefield, Lowestoft, has now been hailed as a shining example to other young people of what can be achieved with a positive attitude.

On Monday afternoon he returned from a 180-mile bike ride to raise funds for seriously-ill children

Louis, 17, of Saffron Square, set off on his Cycling For Life ride from Brighton to Lowestoft on Friday after becoming involved with the organisation Catch 22, which works with social services departments to offer support and advice to young people

He was joined on his charity ride by Peter Hennessey, a volunteer organiser at Catch 22, and hopes to raise �1,000 through sponsorship for London's Great Ormond Street Hospital (GOSH).

He gives much of the credit for his new-found optimism and upbeat attitude to the help he has received from staff at Catch 22, which works across Suffolk on behalf of the National Citizen Service.

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Louis, who is currently studying uniformed services at Lowestoft College, said: 'The National Citizen Service is very good and has helped me. I have an interview with them soon.

'Because of Catch 22 I have decided to help someone else, and I chose GOSH as I wanted to help people less fortunate than me.'

'It is the first time I've ever done something like this, but I have cycled to Beccles and been in the gym training for it.'

When he leaves college, Louis is hoping to become a member of the National Citizen Service.

He has already impressed organisers at Catch 22 by taking part in high-level meetings and mentoring other youngsters on the scheme, which offers residential visits to help build confidence and team skills.

Praising Louis's efforts, Mr Hennessey, 22, said he was a shining example of what could be achieved.

'Louis is an inspiration and a role model to other young people.

'He is very positive and is helping other people on the course.

'He is a fine example of what the National Citizen Service can achieve.'

To sponsor Louis visit his fund-raising website at www.justgiving.com/cyclingforlife

For information on the Catch22-run scheme in Suffolk visit www/catch-22.org.uk/ncs

anthony.carroll@archant.co.uk

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