Second year student Travis Frain has an extensive history of volunteering, however when he was caught up in the Westminster attack earlier this year, he realised there wasn’t enough support for victims of terrorism and was inspired to become a charity trustee.
History with Politics student Travis, from Darwen, was on a trip to the Houses of Parliament with 12 other Edge Hill students when he was hit by a 4X4 vehicle on Westminster Bridge. He sustained a number of injuries requiring surgery and was in hospital for eight days.
Over the years, Travis has volunteered in a wide range of roles from teaching elderly members of the community how to use the latest technology to reconnect with family, to teaching children who might face issues transitioning from Primary to Secondary education in Summer Schools, and flying out to Uganda to teach Maths, English and Sport in the Acholi Quarter Slums of Kampala.
“Areas in Darwen and particularly the neighbouring town of Blackburn are quite deprived, and so the Secondary School that I studied at placed a big emphasis on volunteering in the community; I guess it just grew from there,” said Travis.
For the past six months Travis has had to rely on the support of charities and the goodwill of individuals as he has found there is very little support for victims and survivors of terror attacks. This was the catalyst for him becoming a Trustee for the Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Peace Foundation.
“Since the attack in March it has become abundantly clear that for myself, my friends, and other people affected who I have spoken to, that there is very little support in place at all.
“The Peace Foundation was founded in 1995 by Colin and Wendy Parry OBE after the loss of their son in the Warrington bomb attacks carried out by the IRA in 1993 – the Foundation is the only organisation of its kind in the UK, and hopes to address some of the issues that victims and survivors of terror attacks face in the immediate aftermath, and in the months following.
“They receive very little recognition despite the enormous workload they endure, particularly after the events of this year. As a result of the attacks in Manchester and London, they have supported over 400 of those affected.
“It’s my hope that I can raise awareness of both the charity and also the specific issues that can hamper the recovery of those involved.”
Travis’ volunteering efforts have been awarded with an Excellence Scholarship for in recognition of the time he has given to make a significant difference to the lives of other people.
“I was really happy to hear I’d got the Scholarship and look forward to using it to further this cause in the months to come.”
Last year Edge Hill awarded Colin and Wendy Parry OBE with Honorary Doctors of Education for their efforts in promoting peace and community education in the wake of a family tragedy.
“When Travis came to the Foundation and received help and support from our dedicated team, he impressed everyone with his maturity and his commitment to mark his own misfortune by actively engaging in the work we do,” said Colin. “When he expressed an interest in becoming a Trustee, he was referred on to me as Chairman of the Trust Board.
“Travis and his mother travelled to the Peace Centre to meet me and discuss the role of a Trustee, and I was immediately struck by how well Travis was dealing with his injuries and the trauma of being the victim of a senseless, random terrorist attack. By the time we finished our meeting, I was entirely satisfied that Travis would make a strong contribution to the Board. He struck me as a young man with a clear vision of what he wants to do with his life. I am delighted to admit such a thoughtful and confident young man to the Board of the Foundation which my wife created so many years ago for people just like Travis.”