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Simon McWilliams avatar
Simon McWilliams

10 marathons in 10 days, 1 for each day my boys spent in baby ICU

Fundraising for CW+

234 %
£11,703
raised of £5,000 target
by 73 supporters
Donate

CW+

We fund research, innovation, art & design to make care better for patients & families

Charity Registration No. 1169897

Story

A massive thank you to all for your support, encouragement and generous donations through this journey. Simon, the boys and I are so fortunate to be surrounded by such caring people, we truly are blessed. All money will go to the baby intensive care unit that kept both our boys alive so we could take them home. 🥰

Run 10 completed! What an unbelievably strong (very crazy) man I married. Simon you have proven to us all that with hard work, mental and physical grit, mountains can be moved. Congratulations Simon on completing this challenge. You inspire me and I know you will inspire our boys to live their best life. 4hrs 6mins. 420km done! 43hrs and 56mins total running time in 10days 🙃🏃

Run 9 completed! Very tough and LONG day. Feeling pretty broken and felt EVERY step. Simon McWilliams, the boys are so incredibly proud of you. You're on the home stretch now and we're all cheering you on! 5hrs 11mins. 1 left to go / 42km. 378km done! 🏃

Run 8 completed! 2nd hardest run so far but nearly there. MJ and George are behind him all the way!!!! Hottest day of the year in the UK. 4hrs 36mins. 2 left to go / 84km. 336km done! 🏃

Run 7 completed! Huge shout out to Lara Murray, Dave, Cici and Daniel Lowther for supporting along the way. Today was hot hot hot but a super time! Thanks so much for all the messages. 3hrs 55mins. 3 left to go / 126km. 294km done! 🏃

Run 6 completed! Unfortunately Simon took a tumble 1km from the finish line so ended on a down. Tomorrow is another run, messages of encouragement are very welcome. These runs are not only physically grueling but also mentally. 4hrs 42mins. 4 left to go / 168 km. 252km done! Thanks for the support, donations and messages, all are truly appreciated. 🥰

Run 5 completed! Simon is officially half way!!!!!! Weather has heated up a bit but we are looking good. 4hrs 34mins. 5 left to go / 210km. 210km done!

Run 4 completed! Today was a MUCH better day. We now have blisters on most toes but feeling great. This man is unstoppable!!!! 4hrs 27mins. 6 left to go / 252km. 168km done! 🏃‍♂️

Run 3 completed! In Simon's words: "Tough day today but I know tomorrow will be better. Crazy to think it's not the legs but the skin that has given in!". 4hrs 28mins. 7 left / 294kms to go. 126km done. 🏃

Run 2 completed! 2 blisters in. Running marathons after a week of indulgence in Dubai is making it interesting and needs a touch more mental strength but going strong. 3hrs 58mins. 8 left to go / 336km, 84km done. 🏃

Run 1 completed! Simon was so excited to start this adventure and he had a really good first run. Kept the pace slower and consistent to save the legs. 3hrs 59mins. 9 left to go / 378km. 🏃

Over 500 babies are admitted to Chelsea and Westminster Neonatal Unit each year. The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) has 12 cots caring for babies who need the highest level of nursing and medical care, often requiring breathing support from a ventilator or undergoing major surgery.

In September 2016 my son became one of those babies; he was admitted after birth having suffered major blood loss and suspected brain damage. His prognosis was incredibly poor and my wife and I prepared ourselves that NICU could be his final destination. After several blood transfusions, cooling and the care of the wonderful staff at the Chelsea and Westminster NICU unit, we were moved out of NICU after 5 days. Unfortunately that was only the start of several medical treatments and visits; around 26 months later our son was signed off from any further care and he has made a full recovery! Without the NICU unit and the support we know the outcome would have been very different.  

In October 2018 my wife gave birth to our second son who shortly after being born suffered breathing difficulties and was also admitted to the NICU unit for assisted breathing. The probabilities of ending up in the NICU once is incredibly low, twice is really unheard of, however this time we knew it was a detour on our journey home. After 5 days our second son was discharged from NICU. During this time we managed to speak to the amazing nurses and doctors about their work and reassure other parents. 

I will be running 10 marathons in 10 days, each day representative of the time my sons spent in NICU and the time Chelsea and Westminster NHS staff cared for them. I will also be raising money and awareness for the NICU. The NICU is currently undergoing major redevelopment in order to increase the space by 40% and increase ability to care for an additional 150 babies. The total cost of the NICU redevelopment is £12.5mn.  The private fundraising goes to provide research, innovation, art, design and additional services beyond basic NHS requirements to provide better care for patients and families.

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