NERVES... What nerves? So says Jo O'Byrne who has just completed a spectacular 12,000ft skydive for Support in Mind Scotland's 1 IN 100 fundraising campaign.

Fearless Jo, a service user from Annan, decided to take to the skies and make the bold tandem jump to raise funds for our charity. So far, she has raised almost £500 - a fantastic effort.

Accompanied by Vocational Support Worker Jenny Smith, Jo headed to the Lake District to make her leap of faith at Skydive Northwest's centre at Grange-over-Sands.

"It was great fun," said Jo, once she had literally come back down to earth. "I didn't have any nerves at all. I think Jenny was far more nervous than I was! Call me stubborn, but when I get something in my mind I just do it."


Jo praised her professional skydiver Brian Shaw for helping to keep her at ease. Although it was a tandem skydive, there was even room for a third guest jumper - Fred The Ted, the cuddly bear who is being taken by by Support In Mind Scotland's Dumfries & Galloway Staff round 100 locations in 100 days during the 1 IN 100 campaign.

With Fred tucked into the front of her jump-suit, Jo and Brian made their exit from the plane, hurtling downwards towards the clouds at 120 miles per hour before their parachute gently took them back down to the airfield below.



"There were about 16 of us in the plane, and I was happy that I got to jump last," added Jo. "I have talked to a psychologist in the past and he used to tell me the importance of putting myself in a safe place. Well, my safe place was always up in a clear blue sky with fluffy clouds, so the skydive was actually in my very own safe place.

"It was wonderful coming through the clouds, then seeing all the fields and scenery below as you come down. I wanted to do it again. I've done paragliding before and heights don't bother me, although I don't like flying very much.

"I would definitely do it again, although I'd love to do a solo jump next time. I think I'll come back as a bird!"

Jo has been able to raise around £500 thanks to the generosity of friends, supporters and also people from her home town of Ecclefechan.

Praising Jo's bravery and fundraising efforts, Jenny said: "Although I was looking at what she did through my own fearful eyes, it was a huge thing that Jo did and I am full of admiration. She's told me she wants to walk on the wings of a plane in mid-air next!"

If you have an idea to raise funds for our 1 in 100 campaign, email us at: [email protected] or call 0131 662 4359