Thomas, aged nine, took part in Jog on January to raise funds for Child Bereavement UK in memory of his father, who died when Thomas was five months old.

We knew what a worthwhile, helpful and supportive charity Child Bereavement UK is. It was an easy decision to raise funds by taking part in Jog on January.

My Dad died on Boxing Day 2014. I decided I would like to do something positive to mark the anniversary by raising money and awareness for Child Bereavement UK in 2024. I enjoy running and I was familiar with the Jog on January challenge as my brother participated a few years ago, so I decided it was my turn this year!

Child Bereavement UK helped our family both at the time of my Daddy’s death and afterwards, so we knew what a worthwhile, helpful and supportive charity it is. It was an easy decision to raise funds by taking part in Jog on January.

To prepare for the challenge, I was careful not to do too much in one day and made sure I had rest days in between longer runs. To help with my fundraising, we set up a JustGiving page and I began to share the news that I was taking part in the challenge via social media - asking friends to spread the word and share was very helpful.

At school, my class mate mates and teachers encouraged me with supportive words, donated and regularly shared my journey at assembly. I also inspired a few of my peers to start running!

Edinburgh Athletic Club followed my journey and provided a gold finishing line; lots of club members cheered me on as I completed some final laps on the track. I was also excited to be joined by Stuart McInally (former Scotland rugby captain) to complete some miles on the Forth Road Bridge.

I gained confidence from completing the challenge, satisfaction from raising money for a great cause, and I increased my fitness! I was very proud to be recognised for my efforts.

The fundraising team at Child Bereavement UK were regularly in contact by email and there was a Facebook group for the event you could join. You could have more or less support from the fundraising team depending on your personal preference.

If someone else is thinking about taking part in Jog on January, my advice is just do it! It was a great way to get outside, do some exercise and get some fresh air in January!

If you have been inspired to take on a challenge for us, please visit our challenge events page, contact our fundraising team on [email protected] or call us on 01494 569048.