An 11-year-old girl aims to run and cycle 42 miles each week in all weathers to raise money for two charities that are close to her heart.
Daisy Cobham had planned to take on the Three Peaks Challenge - a test of endurance that involves climbing the three highest peaks of Scotland, England and Wales - for charity, with her father, but she has been forced to change her plans due to the restrictions imposed during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Her father, Major Edward Cobham of the Royal Artillery, was deployed to assist the NHS in the Outer Hebrides, off the west coast of mainland Scotland, meaning she needed to come up with a new way of raising funds for two incredibly important charities in her life.
“Quite recently a family friend … Maj Mandy Islam, sadly passed away of cancer and I think that really boosted me on to raise money and help others who might be in that same situation.”
Daisy aims to run and cycle an average of 42 miles each week, in the downtime outside of her schoolwork, to raise money for the charities Blood Cancer UK and Little Troopers.
The aim of military charity Little Troopers is to support military children and ease separation periods with events, initiatives and resources.
Blood Cancer UK is a UK-based charity dedicated to funding research into all blood cancers including leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma, as well as to offering information and support to blood cancer patients.
Daisy, speaking about her own experience with Little Troopers, for whom she has previouosly raised money, said:
“They really supported me when my dad was away, and my little sister. They’ve given us tickets to Lapland before.”
Speaking to Hal Stewart on BFBS Radio, Daisy and her father explained how this epic fundraising challenge came about. She said:
“We were going to do it this summer when I came back from South Africa as I was on an exchange last term.
"Obviously, we can’t do it anymore because of the COVID-19 situation so I decided to raise some money for charity by running and cycling the distance from [Salisbury] to where my dad was posted in the Outer Hebrides”.
The total distance is 1,080 kilometres or 670 miles.
Another reason Daisy is keen to raise money for Blood Cancer UK is that her neighbour Gale is currently suffering from cancer.
Maj Cobham said he was thrilled by his daughter’s tenacity and has continued to support her now he’s back home. He said:
“I was absolutely delighted.
"I was really upset that Daisy and I couldn’t do the Three Peaks and then to find that she decided without any prompting to go and run and cycle 1080 km, I was so impressed.”
Daisy’s charity challenge will continue for many more months so there’s a lot of fundraising still left to do. She will be on the road, in all weathers, right up until school starts again in September so her father is encouraging everyone to donate and support her. He said:
“I’ve invited [friends] on Facebook to follow Daisy. Such positive support from everybody who was so kind to me up in Stornaway looking after me whilst I was up there and quite a lot of them have donated money and are incredibly impressed by what Daisy’s been up to.”