Ailith's Leeds 10k for Sunshine & Smiles

by Ailith Harley-Roberts in Leeds, England, United Kingdom

Ailith's Leeds 10k for Sunshine & Smiles
We did it
On 13th July 2022 we successfully raised £340 ( + est. £60.00 Gift Aid ) with 15 supporters in 56 days

To continue, & develop, vital sports & healthy lifestyle sessions for children and young people with Down syndrome in Leeds.

When Thalia was born I wondered if she would ever be able to ride a bike (along with lots of other worries & questions of course!).

But we were always determined that she would be loved and offered all of the opportunities we could possibly give her.

Sometimes finding opportunities that suit Thalia is really hard - often sports activities are too fast and the rules can be tricky to follow - and as time has gone on it has felt difficult for Thalia to join what would be seen as 'mainstream' activities with typically developing children ... and that's a really isolating feeling for her, and for us!

While it's not the perfect solution, Sunshine & Smiles, has been able to offer a wide range of sessions to help Thalia, and many other children, develop skills & confidence - football, cricket, dance, swimming, cycling, yoga.

Being able to take part in these kind of sessions should be possible for all children & young people - without there being a disproportionate cost involved. It is well evidenced that having a child with additional needs costs more!

Sunshine & Smiles relies on grants and donations to run all their activities and there is no charge for families to attend - so that they are as inclusive and accessible as possible!

After Covid, as for many charities, Sunshine & Smiles has lost a huge amount of income through lack of fundraising opportunities but also more competition for grants and other funding.

Thanks to Sunshine & Smiles, Thalia learnt to ride her bike during the first Covid lockdown and now she rides to school everyday .. something that should never be underestimated or taken for granted!

I want to make sure that as many people with Down syndrome in Leeds as possible can take part in sports sessions that are tailored for them - so that they can stay healthy, physically & emotionally, build confidence and learn new skills and have a sense of achievement from being involved and included .... please help me to raise £1000 to go towards our Crowdfunding project to keep our sessions running but also to help us plan more!!

If we get 25 individual donors and reach our £5000 target all of your donations will be matched!

Once again I am taking on different sporting activities this year starting with Keswick Sprint Triathlon on 21st May, Leeds 10k on 3rd July and the Great North Run in September! My 50 year old knees are not thanking me for this .. so please donate the price of a coffee or a pint if you can ... you really will be making a difference!

Thank you for reading!

Love Ailith xxx

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