A blind runner from Ceredigion will tackle the Cardiff Bay 10k this Sunday (26 March) to raise money for Guide Dogs Cymru.

Louise Jenkins, 57, of Lampeter, hopes to raise £500 for the charity that restored her independence by matching her with guide dog Sian, a two-year-old Labrador retriever.

Louise, who works as a housing officer at Ceredigion County Council, had been without a guide dog for nearly three years after the sudden retirement of her previous dog, Trinity, with a bad back.

“I found life without a guide dog horrendous in every single way,” said Louise.

“I had to use a long cane to get out and it was a struggle.

“Your independence slips away, and you realise you’ve been avoiding people. I even lost my confidence to run and looked for excuses to train on the treadmill instead of going out. When I got the call from Guide Dogs, I was ecstatic.”

This Sunday’s race is the first of four Guide Dogs fundraisers in Louise’s calendar for 2023. She will be accompanied by guide runner Mel Gaul and attached to her via a wristband.

“I thought running would be a great way to celebrate having a guide dog back in my life and introduce her to everyone,” Louise said. “She has already given me back my independence and confidence, and when I walk down the street with her, I feel 10 feet tall.

“One of the first things we did together was take the bus to Carmarthen so I could visit my husband Adrian, who is in a nursing home. It’s been a tough few years, and I’ve felt so helpless.

“My previous dog, Trinity, is enjoying her retirement, and I’m hoping to raise enough to name a guide dog puppy after her to thank her for keeping me safe all those years.”

If you’d like to help Louise to name a puppy, please visit 'Louise Jenkins is fundraising for Guide Dogs on justgiving.com.