Isle student with eating disorder takes to her horse

Charlotte Clark on her horse Finn.
Charlotte Clark on her horse Finn.

A student who battled through exams after being diagnosed with an eating disorder has given something back to the organisation which helped her after taking on a charity horse ride.

Charlotte Clark, aged 20, of High Melwood Farm, Epworth, jumped aboard her horse Finn for the challenge earlier this year, racking up more than 85km across two days in a bid to raise vital funds.

She set off from the Derbyshire end of the Pennine Bridleway, taking on 42km on the first day and then returned the following day across the rocky terrain to complete the challenge and raise more than £1,170 for Grimsby-based charity Rharian Fields.

Charlotte said: “Last year during my A2 exams, I was diagnosed with an eating disorder by my GP, who was very supportive and managed to get me referred to the specialist eating disorder unit at Rharian Fields.

“Only a week after receiving my A-Level results I became a day patient.

“The help that I received from the staff and other service users was phenomenal. Thankfully, I can now say that these other service users are now good friends.”

During her admission she learned about the negative implications of her dangerously low BMI and said: “The most significant to myself was the risk of osteoporosis as it could have meant that I would never ride again, something that I have aways done since the age of three.”

She added: “The work that they do at Rharian Fields is fantastic, it allows people to start rebuilding their lives and improve their futures.

The Charlotte’s Pennine Bridleway challenge raised £1,170 for the eating disorder unit at Grimsby for the Gardiner Hill Foundation

She added: “They do incredible, life-changing work. The GHF supports people with mental health issues in ways which empower them. It’s principal aim is to encourage and support education and training, employment, and independent living.”