Shipwrecked’s Chris Jammer is embarking on a Great Wall of China trek in memory of his mother, who died a few months before he starred in the TV show.
The model and festival co-founder will be raising money for Grief Encounter, a UK charity offering support to young people following the death of a parent or sibling.
Jammer, who arrived on the island in the first episode of the ninth series, called the experience a healing process.
“I struggled quite a bit after she went and then I went and filmed Shipwrecked which was an incredible healing process for me. It’s been a hard journey,” he said.
“I feel like I’m at the stage now where I’ve come to terms with it, I can see it in a positive way and like she helped me grow up and learn a lot about myself.
“I want to give something back now.”
The 25-year-old was the primary carer for Annabel, who died on April 24 last year – the day before her 57th birthday – after being diagnosed with terminal bone cancer.
Over nine days in October, Jammer will take part in the Great Wall Discovery, which includes trekking through the Yan Mountains and completing a series of climbs.
He will be joined by Made In Chelsea’s James Dunmore, who lost both his sisters to cystic fibrosis when he was a teenager.
Jammer said: “The grief thing has really had a massive impact on my life and I’ve turned it into a positive rather than a negative. I think that’s where I can have the most impact in helping people.
“I am in a place mentally where I think she’d be proud of what I’m doing and and strong enough to go and help other people.
“It doesn’t bring back negative emotions when I think about my mum now. I just think about her in a completely positive way which is definitely the right place to be in to do this sort of stuff.”
The 2019 reboot of Shipwrecked saw Jammer’s team the Tigers crowned the winners, sharing the £50,000 jackpot.
The reality TV star is now an ambassador for Grief Encounter and hopes to use his new-found fame to encourage other young people to talk about bereavement.
He said: “If I ever struggle she’s always the first thing that comes into my head. When I was struggling out in Shipwrecked sometimes she was the thing that kept me going.
“I hope I encourage other people with platforms like this to go out and use it for good, because it’s all good and well being known, but you want to be known for doing good.
“I’ve had a lot of messages on Instagram about the grief thing. I think being able to relay that message again and say, ‘look, you can go out and do things that are challenging, you can go and do things past grief’.
“I think I was quite glad that people could see it because if you look at me I’m big stature, manly-man sort of thing, so I think it’s nice.”