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10 year old 'super fan' visits Burry Port RNLI

Lifeboats News Release

On a quiet Saturday morning, some of our volunteers met up with Alfie Jelf-Jones, a ten year old from Swansea, who is a massive fan of everything RNLI related.

RNLI/Mal O'Connell

Alfie with the D class 'Diane Hilary' and the Burry Port crew members.

A chance meeting at a local event with shore crew member Mal O'Connell, an invite was extended to Alfie, little sister Bella, and parents Kirsty and Dane. In attendance on the day were volunteer crew members Mal O'Connell, Andrew Pullman, Jared Philips, Tracy Phipps, John Massocchi, and senior Helmsman Gary Morgan.

Alfie's bedroom has been decorated in a very strong 'maritime' theme with the RNLI at the centre of focus, so obviously a very big fan.

Alfie was kitted out in the smallest crew kit (used for Education visits), and given a first-hand tour of the D class 'Diane Hilary', and the Atlantic 75 'Leicester Challenge II' by Helmsman and Education officer Gary Morgan, a look at the current Boathouse facilities, and a view of the new Lifesaving Centre plans by all the volunteers.

At the end of the visit, some gifts were presented to Alfie and his family, including a small Lifeguard uniform, a framed photo of the lifeboats in action, and a certificate to show all his family and school friends.

Life isn't always easy for Alfie. He has an auto-immune disorder called PFAPA. His condition means that every 21 days he gets a flare up which involves mouth ulcers, high temps, swollen glands, painful joints, headaches and severe sickness. From the photos you can see why it was so amazing for his parents to see Alfie having the time of his life that day.

Mum Kirsty said ' Alfie has not stopped talking about his visit, and could not wait to return to school after the summer break. He is now going to do a school project on the RNLI. For many days after the visit, Alfie has been a very happy little boy. A big thanks to all concerned.'

Burry Port RNLI volunteers were glad to be able to make a pleasurable visit for the family, and are looking forward to seeing them again in the future, as well as hopefully a glimpse of the school project.

RNLI media contact

For more information contact Alun Wells, Burry Port Lifeboat Press Officer on 01554 832756 or email a.wells142@btinternet.com. Alternatively contact Eleri Roberts, RNLI Media Engagement Officer on 01745 585162 / 07771 941390 or email Eleri_Roberts@rnli.org.uk.

RNLI/Mal O'Connell

On board the Atlantic 75 'Leicester Challenge II' with Gary Morgan

RNLI/Mal O'Connell

Alfie taking instructions fom little sister Bella

RNLI/Mal O'Connell

Certificate presentation from Mal O'Connell

RNLI/Mal O'Connell

Trying out the kit with Gary Morgan

RNLI/Kirsty Jelf

Part of Alfie's bedroom

Key facts about the RNLI

The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.

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Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or or by email.