Today fearless fundraiser Natalia Spencer reaches the halfway point in her epic ‘Walk of Love’ around the coastline of Great Britain – a truly amazing achievement! Congratulations Natalia!
Natalia decided to take on the 6000-mile walk after her 5 year old daughter Elizabeth tragically passed away from a rare autoimmune condition in Bristol Children’s Hospital last December. Elizabeth loved the seaside, and Natalia found being close to the sea a great comfort following her loss, giving her the idea for the journey.
Natalia set off from Durdle Door, Dorset, on Valentine’s Day. Now, exactly six months later, she will walk into Lurignish in northwest Scotland. She has already covered 3,000 miles around Dorset, Cornwall, Devon, the entire coast of Wales, Lancashire and Cumbria.
Incredibly, before she even reaches the halfway point, Natalia has already raised more than £60,000 for the Paediatric Intensive Care Unit at Bristol Children’s Hospital, where Elizabeth was treated. She hopes to raise £100,000 in total for The Grand Appeal, to help support other critically-ill children.
Natalia said, ‘The walk has been incredibly challenging but I am so proud to have reached the half way point. The last few days have been some of the toughest of my walk so far, as the coastline becomes more rugged and remote the further into the Highlands I go. That being said, Scotland has been my favourite place so far too. The wild and untouched nature is breathtakingly beautiful and every day I walk through awe-inspiring landscapes.
‘Scottish people are also incredibly friendly, kind and generous. So many people have walked with me, offered me a cup of coffee or somewhere to stay. I have even had a new pair of walking boots bought for me by local supporters. Every day I see the very best in people.
‘I have met so many inspiring people, especially other parents who have lost their precious children. I think about them often and feel a very special connection to each of them. Speaking to others and knowing they understand what I am going through is a huge comfort and means I am not on my own.
‘Waking up every day to another day without Elizabeth is the hardest thing I have ever had to do. But I know she would be so proud of what I have achieved. By completing this walk I will be able to bring something positive from her death. Her memory will live on through the people I meet along the way and all those who are touched by her legacy.’
Thank you so much Natalia for all you’re doing to support critically-ill children in Bristol Children’s Hospital – you are a true inspiration! We wish you all the best as you continue your walk back to your starting point, and we will be so proud to welcome you home.
To donate to Natalia’s ‘Walk of Love’, visit www.justgiving.com/Natalia-Spencer or text ELIF55 and your donation amount to 70070.