AN inspiring family is set to tackle a huge challenge in their beloved son’s memory for an Edinburgh children’s charity.
The family of Christopher Nelson, who died in 2015, is raising money for the Sick Kids Friends Foundation (SKFF).
Christopher’s mother, Donna Nelson, alongside his fiancée Steffi, sister Becca and 19 friends have signed up for the Tough Mudder obstacle race in June.
In just over a year Donna, of Eskbank, Midlothian, has raised more than £5,500 for SKFF in memory of her son, who died unexpectedly in Amsterdam aged 24.
She started the appeal by collecting donations at her son’s funeral and has since arranged a variety of events including cycling 200 miles from Edinburgh to Iona, a 10,000ft skydive and bingo nights. Tough Mudder is next on the list.
Donna said: “We want to keep the memory of our son alive and continue to raise money for such a great cause in his name.
“When Christopher was younger, he was constantly in and out of A&E at the Royal Hospital for Sick Children with different sporting injuries, and in some cases he was bed ridden, but he was such an active child he found it difficult to stay in bed.
“SKFF supplied him with a games console he could play without having to get up. It made a world of difference, not only to him but to us.
“He spent his first night away from home there and he was so at ease, he thought he had been staying at a hotel.
“It was reassuring to know he felt safe and happy, even though he was in pain, so we have always been so grateful for the work of SKFF and we’re glad we’ve been able to give back to them now.”
The money raised is being used to enhance the bed spaces for children in the hospital and provide games and DVDs to keep them entertained during their stay.
The SKFF exists to transform the experiences of children and young people in hospital so they can be a child first and a patient second.
It is contributing more than £3 million worth of art and therapeutic design enhancements when the Royal Hospital for Sick Children moves to a new, purpose-built home at Little France in spring 2018.
Sue Diamond, community fund-raising manager at SKFF, said: “We are so grateful and honoured to be chosen as Christopher’s charity and are delighted with how much support Donna and her team have received.
“The money raised will have a huge impact on the lives of young patients and their families during their time at the new hospital.
“Donna is doing an incredibly admirable thing and we really want to thank her and the whole family.”
The SKFF supports and complements the work of the hospital as well as other children’s healthcare settings.
To support Donna and her team donations can be made at https://teamskfftough.everydayhero.com/uk/teamnelson
The SKFF also has charity places available for Tough Mudder Scotland at Drumlanrig Castle, in Dumfries and Galloway, on 17 June for £30. See www.edinburghsickkids.org/events