A fitness enthusiast is taking on the challenge of a lifetime as he attempts to run from John O’Groats to Land’s End in aid of Childline.
Jack Lancefield, 24, who works for KPMG, was inspired by his company’s charity partnership with the NSPCC, which began in 2018. He begins his run on April 15 in John O’Groats and will enter the South West of England on May 3, with the grand finale in Lands’ End on May 11.
All the money raised during Jack’s epic journey will go to Childline, which is the free and confidential service for children and teenagers in need of help and advice, delivered by the NSPCC.
He said: “What I will be suffering during the 27 days will be nothing compared to all the unfortunate children that are currently or have been through child abuse. I didn’t realise it costs £30,000 a day – just to run Childline. I was taken back by that. To ensure there will be people answering the children’s calls. Every step is for them.”
Jack is hoping to raise £7,500 by completing the challenge, which is enough to run Childline for six hours that could see up to 860 calls answered from children needing help.
He’s been heavily supported by his family and friends and has been training both mentally and physically for the challenge.
“I’m running a lot, but obviously I don’t want to overdo it either and risk injury,” he said. “I’ve entered a few ultra-marathons to get my mileage up and understand what it feels like to be running for six or seven hours per day.”
He’s also been reading and listening to podcasts from people who have taken on epic challenges.
He said: “Someone who had tackled 50 iron man triathlons in 50 states in 50 days used an alter-ego technique. He would wake up and pretend he was someone else that day and that was his way of absorbing all the pain – by pretending to be someone else. I’m toying with this idea.”
NSPCC Director of Fundraising, Josephine Swinhoe, said: “Tackling the entire length of Great Britain is no easy feat and takes a huge amount of preparation and determination to fulfil this challenge. As with all of our supporters, we strongly value Jack’s efforts and achievements in his fundraising and it goes a long way in our fight for every childhood. The calls answered while Jack is running could be life-saving ones.
“We would like to thank Jack and wish him good luck in his upcoming challenge. We will be following his progress intently!”
On average, a child somewhere in the UK contacts Childline every 25 seconds. Childline gives children and young people, who may be going through the toughest times of their lives, access to confidential support when they need it and ensures they have someone to turn to when they are in distress or danger.
In 2017/18 Childline volunteers delivered almost 280,000 counselling sessions to children and young people across the UK on the phone and online.
Childline is there for them 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, on 0800 11 11 and www.childline.org.uk.
To find out more about Jack’s challenge or to support him, please visit his fundraising page.
Location Estimated number of Childline counselling sessions delivered in 2017/18