Losing a child is said to be the worst trauma any parent will be subject to.
After John lost his eldest son, Jake Bell, on the 17th July 2020, all he wanted to do was find a way to be with him again. This meant visiting the darkest place in his mind; a place no one should have to go. It affected his mental wellbeing, resulting in negative repercussions for himself and his family.
John has now chosen to dedicate his life to sharing his love for Jake and use the strength from that love to help others.
Being Ex-Army, he spent the first year after Jake's passing, pushing himself through physical challenges to counter balance his mental struggles. This led to John finding a place of solitude in the great outdoors through eco-therapy.
This story shows what a father is capable of, with an aim to achieve something truly beautiful as a legacy to his boy. Through the love he has for his son, John wants to make sure that no one else has to suffer the way he is suffering. He knows that Jake is with him all the way, in his heart and memories, guiding him to help others.
Everyone has a right to feel happy, peaceful, safe and loved. Why would we want to have a negative impact on others when we can have a positive impact, showing care, kindness, respect and compassion, creating a blissful and tranquil life - heaven on earth.
Camp Elysium will be a retreat for families and young people who are struggling with the stress of day to day life. We are all subject to day to day struggles no matter how big or small, and Camp Elysium will focus on the basics of life away from the 9-5 corporate-conditioned lifestyle we seem to think is the way we should be living.
The retreat will include camping, shelter building, camp fires, natural arts and crafts and everything naturally beautiful. There will also be planned days out and walks in some of Britain's most beautiful natural countryside and parks (Walking4Hope).
We look forward to seeing you and sharing some memorable experiences at Camp Elysium - Heaven on Earth.