THE widow of Red Arrows pilot Jon Egging has spoken out about how her late husband is changing the lives of thousands of children on the sixth anniversary of his death.

Dr Emma Egging told how Jon would be proud that thousands of young children have found a path, thanks to the trust founded in his name.

The Jon Egging Trust helped just eight students in its first year but this year a 25-strong team with 600 volunteers has worked with 7000 youngsters across the country.

CEO of the charity Emma, said: “The growth has been exciting and so many young people have benefited from what we do.

"There is no better testament to Jon than an organisation that represents who he was and the excellence of the Red Arrows. He’s out there helping change young people’s lives for the better.

“Hearing when the young people say ‘I never knew I was good at this’, ‘I can now do this’ or ‘That’s what I want to be’ is what we are all about.

“It is about the fact that sometimes life throws difficulties at us all.

“It’s not always plain sailing or blue skies. It’s about how you deal with those situations that matter.

“Some of our young people come from really challenging situations and things aren’t easy for them but as Jon used to say, if you fly up high enough you will always find blue skies even on the most cloudy day."

“For our young people to hear that even when things are hard, to have the courage to keep going and trying again the next day even if they have had a bad day is really important. I think it’s important to remember when life is difficult there are ways things will get better.”

The trust provides learning programmes as well as outreach work in schools to develop young people’s work and life skills and provide positive role models.

It is hoped the trust will extend to nine different regions by 2020 and deliver support to 10,000 young people every year.

Emma is particularly proud of how the charity has helped change the life of a 13-year-old young carer from Dorset.

“She looks after her mum who doesn’t go out of the flat because she is agoraphobic and her dad is partially sighted so she goes home and is a young carer.”

From expressing an interest in aviation engineering at the beginning of the Blue Skies Programme, she is now on a second level course working on leadership qualities and has even been completing sessions at a local engineering firm who have spotted potential in her and want to set her up with a placement.

“For her to have that route is incredible really, seeing as she is from a situation which for her is very hard at 13.

“Jon’s ethos was the most important thing in life is to be inspired and if you are inspired, great things can happen.

“I’m sure Jon couldn’t help but be proud of us.

“Jon was a team player and he was very good at bringing the team together and what better team than the Reds, representing excellence and aviation at its best. He was very proud to be part of it.

“I am only sad that he’s not able to speak to these young people and hear how their lives have changed.

“I have to say the people of Bournemouth have always been fantastic. They have always been 100 per cent behind us and always really encouraging so I really can’t thank the people of Bournemouth enough.”