Will Hope will be running the 13.1 mile Great North Run to give other families with a seriously ill child in hospital a place to stay at The Sick Children’s Trust ‘Home from Home’ Crawford House. Will and his wife Laura were supported by the charity in 2019 when their daughter, Sophie, was suddenly diagnosed with a brain tumour and spent a month in Newcastle’s Royal Victoria Infirmary undergoing four major surgeries. Throughout her time in hospital, her parents, from Houghton-le-Spring, were given a place to stay at Crawford House.
Since leaving hospital and Crawford House, Sophie’s family and friends, have been busy fundraising for The Sick Children’s Trust. Will’s half marathon is the latest in a long line of events the family have hosted for the charity, and he will also be joined by his brother Jonny, colleague Lee and friend Louis. He said:
“Crawford House was a lifeline for our family at the most difficult time. The staff were so welcoming and supportive, the facilities perfect for our needs and most importantly, it meant our family could be together any time, at the most difficult time of our lives. Crawford House was indispensable to us. This is why we continue to fundraise.
“I am hoping to raise over £1,000 as I know how difficult it has been for all charities throughout the pandemic, but especially for The Sick Children’s Trust who rely heavily on donations and also events which have been impossible to run for the best part of 18 months.”
This year’s Great North Run takes place on Sunday 12 September. The Hope family will not only be celebrating Will’s achievement, but they will also be celebrating Sophie starting school. Will continued:
“Sophie is doing really well and is starting reception at the same school she went to nursery which she absolutely loves! She is getting more active and confident every day and we are so proud of how far she has come.
“On race day, hopefully Sophie and Laura will be at the finish line waiting for me and that will keep me motivated on the route. Not only that but thinking about what the charity did for us during Sophie’s initial treatment was something we couldn’t have done without and will always appreciate immensely.”
Opened in 1996, Crawford House has supported over 12,000 families in the last 25 years giving them one less thing to worry about when their child is in hospital. It is thanks to supporters like the Hope family who continue to fundraise for the charity that Crawford House can be there for many more families. Andrew Leadbitter, Crawford House Manager, said: Lee and Louis
“We’re delighted that Will is taking on the Great North Run for us, alongside his family and friends. We feel incredibly humbled by the support Sophie’s whole family has given us since they stayed at Crawford House. We know how much having a place to stay close to Sophie meant to them, and are touched that they want to help other families who find themselves in a similar situation.”
Support Will’s fundraising, click here.