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Preparation for the 2.6 Challenge well underway

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A whole host of equine charities are looking forward to participating in the 2.6 Challenge on Sunday 26 April, which aims to raise a whopping £67 million for UK charities

 The UK charity sector is predicted to lose out on £4 billion in income over 12 weeks as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. To combat this, the 2.6 Challenge aims to raise £67 million for charities all across the UK. This was the original fundraising target of the 2020 Virgin Money London Marathon, which was due to take place on the 26 April and has unfortunately been cancelled due to the outbreak. Every year for the past 13, the marathon has set a world record for annual one-day fundraising, with 2019 bringing in £66.4 million, and more than £1 billion raised since the race’s conception in 1981.

Supporters are being asked to take part in an activity of their choice on Sunday based around the numbers 2.6, 26 or any combination of two and six. This could mean reading 26 books with your children, a 2.6 minute sponsored silence, a 26m three-legged race, run or cycle 2.6 miles or try 26 sit- or press-ups. Supporters are also encouraged to donate whatever they can to their chosen charity via the JustGiving or Virgin Money Giving pages.

The Brooke, Bransby Horses and the RSPCA are among the animal charities taking part, with RSPCA centres Gonsal Farm and Felledge creating videos encouraging animal lovers to do their bit – but it’s not just national charities who are getting involved, a whole host of local charities are doing their bit, too. The Gambia Horse and Donkey Trust (GHDT), based in Ockley, Surrey, has two of the smallest and possibly most enthusiastic supporters who are taking up the challenge of walking 2.6 miles. Two-year-old James Anderson and his five-year-old cousin Angus Gunnyeon plan to undertake their challenge on Sunday in Aberdeen. While social distancing means they can’t walk together, they’ll complete their challenge as a pair virtually instead.

Olympians are lending their names to the cause, with athletes Fatima Whitbread, Helen Clitheroe, Jamie Baulch and Roger Black backing a virtual 26.2 mile marathon in aid of the Blue Cross. The challenge involves supporters signing up with £12 to move a mile or more a day to meet the 26.2 mile target – whether by running or walking. Everyone who completes the virtual marathon will receive a Blue Cross medal and certificate.

 For more information about the 2.6 Challenge or to donate to your chosen charity, visit twopointsixchallenge.justgiving.com or uk.virginmoneygiving.com

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