Seventeen month old Avi Musgrave from Melksham, and her mum Emma, are taking part in the The Forever Friends Appeal’s ‘My Walk of Life Marathon’ as a thank you for the specialist care the Avi received at the Royal United Hospital in Bath.

Avi was born six weeks premature and was cared for by specialists in the hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). Earlier this year Avi spent more time in hospital being treated for sepsis.

Emma wanted to thank the staff at the RUH for everything they have done for Avi so they are taking part in the marathon, which is happening this month.

Avi walking a mile with her pet dog

“The RUH means an incredible amount to us as without the care of their staff on NICU Avi would not be here now,” said Sarah. “When she was treated for sepsis back in January by staff in A&E and the Paediatric team, at her worst the doctors didn’t think she would survive but they never gave up on her and she beat it.

“The work that all of the staff do is absolutely amazing and we will be forever grateful to them for giving our little girl back. We’re aiming to walk one mile a day during September until she reaches the target of her first marathon. She’s loving the challenge so far and it’s great to raise some money as a thank you for everything the RUH have done for her.”

Avi walking a mile

Emma set their fundraising target at £100 and already friends and family have donated over £725 to their Just Giving page, making them the second top fundraiser in the challenge.

Laura Piner, Events and Community Coordinator, The Forever Friends Appeal, said, “We are so grateful for Avi and Emma for taking part in My Walk of Life Marathon. Avi’s enthusiasm to explore, alongside Emma’s desire to help the hospital, is inspiring and we are extremely thankful for their support.

“There’s still time to sign up and take part in the My Walk of Life Marathon as it’s a virtual walking challenge and it doesn’t finish until 30 September. The aim is to walk 26.2 miles and it’s completely up to you how you decide to complete the total distance, whether you get out and discover the great outdoors or tot up your miles in your own home or garden.”

The proceeds raised by My Walk of Life Marathon will go towards helping the hospital’s charity The Forever Friends Appeal provide support to staff beyond the coronavirus crisis and fund projects and medical equipment that make a real difference to our patients and their families. Participants are also welcome to support a particular ward, department or appeal if they wish.

To make your step count for RUH staff and patients sign up at www.my walkoflifemarathon.co.uk. It’s free to register and if you raise £100 by 30 September you will receive a medal.