Nurse cycles 3,200 miles for charity in every children’s hospice in the UK

A pediatric nurse will cycle more than 3,200 miles over 70 days at each children’s hospice service in the UK to raise over £500,000 to support their work.

Ranceska Lennon from Cheney’s, Buckinghamshire, will begin her tour of 54 UK children’s hospices in Oxford on 20 June, marking the start of Children’s Hospice Week (20-26 June).

The 35-year-old – who had not ridden a bike as a child before holding this challenge – will then walk a route that takes her across the UK, through Bristol, Birmingham, Manchester, Cambridge, Sheffield, Belfast, Scotland . More.

Her goal is to finish on August 28 after averaging 46 miles per day.

At the start of her challenge, every children’s hospice in the UK, to support Ms Lennon – represented each center for 54 minutes of cycling or any wheel-related activity, such as wheelchair racing or trolley dashes. Show your support by completing it.

After working in the NHS for 10 years before moving to the children’s hospice area, Ms Lennon told the PA news agency she saw “first hand” what children and their families go through, and supported the hospices offer .

“Before the kids went to the hospice area I didn’t really know what they did. And then when I left I suddenly realized how much support they give and how little people know what they do, “He said.

“I am in a very privileged position to have the opportunity to be with him in his journey and to support him through some of the most difficult times in his life that most people do not see.

“I wanted to find a way to be able to share this with people and show what families go through and then what children’s hospices do to support them.”

According to Children’s Hospices Across the UK (ChatUK), children’s hospices in the UK care for more than 99,000 seriously ill children and 87% are charity funded – a charity founded by Ms Lennon.

ChatUK aims to educate people about the importance of services provided by children’s hospices.

Funds raised by Ms Lennon will go to Together for Short Lives, a children’s palliative care charity.

Only four months before the start of the challenge, Ms Lennon experienced the loss of her close friend’s son, Henry, who died of acute myeloid leukemia at the age of nine.

That’s why he dedicated ChatUK to Henry – and named his bike after him.

Ms Lennon said the UK is leading the way in children’s hospices – with only 12 in the US, Canada and Australia – but is struggling to raise the funds needed to continue their important work.

She began her training in May 2020 as a child since she didn’t ride a bike – but luckily her mother, who is a more “regular cyclist”, helped her along the way.

“I was a runner before, but I knew running all the hospices would take a lot of time, so I had to think of another way”, she said.

“My mom wouldn’t even let me get on the bike to begin with. So I got up at six in the morning and went on my way home by bicycle so that I wouldn’t embarrass myself.”

Ms Lennon said she was inspired by the cycling challenge three years ago after attending a talk by Ben Fogle about climbing Mount Everest, adding that her line, “find your Everest”, stuck with her. happened.

“It made me think that the challenge of your life is not to climb Everest. It might be finding your own Everest,” said Ms. Lennon.

“Given that I haven’t really owned a bike and haven’t ridden one since I was a kid, it’s definitely been an Everest to be where I am today.”

Ms. Lennon’s fundraiser Justving.com/team/CHATUK. can be found on