Meet Melanie and her son, Caleb.

Melanie tackled 2020’s Virtual London Marathon. Through the wind and the rain she completed the 26.2 miles to raise money for Family Fund.

Melanie’s eldest son, Caleb, is autistic. Melanie explains “Over lockdown we received a grant of a tablet. It has been such a big help. My son has become so much calmer and his reading skills have progressed massively."

“Because of this, I really wanted to give something back to the friendly people at Family Fund – they have helped our family so much.”

Determined to get into shape after the birth of her new baby, Melanie set her sights on the Virtual Virgin London Marathon. “I knew that I needed a definite goal in mind to focus on and push myself. I am not sporty in the slightest but I figured running does not require as much coordination as sports such as football, or any special supplies that I need to buy, either.

“The London Marathon is something I would never normally be able to do, but since it went virtual, I thought it's now or never.”

Melanie opted to walk the race rather than run due to problems with her feet. “I walked 26 miles and ran the last 0.2 miles,” Melanie explained. The event itself required a super early start and took Melanie 13 hours to complete. “The race was one of the hardest things I have ever done!”

Thankfully, Melanie had lots of support along the way. “I am very lucky that my family phoned me to cheer me on and keep me going. My 12 year old brother actually joined me for eight miles! I really appreciated their support, especially from my husband, mum and sister.”

Melanie’s son, Caleb, was working towards his 20k medal on the same day. “It was lovely, we both finished our races at the same time."

“Caleb was so excited to win his medal. A cuddle from him at the end made it all worthwhile.”

Battling the elements for all those hours definitely paid off, because Melanie raised an amazing £140 for Family Fund. This is vital support that will help families raising disabled and seriously ill children and young people across the UK. We couldn’t be more grateful for Melanie’s support – we can’t wait to see what she does next!

“Caleb and I are currently making some hand-carved leather bracelets and keyrings to sell for our next fundraiser. We share them on our Instagram.” If you would like to support Melanie and Caleb and would like to purchase their creations then please head to Melanie's Instagram page

If you’re thinking about tackling a virtual event for Family Fund, get in touch with us at [email protected] we’d love to help get you started.