A family from Great Wakering is undertaking a challenge to help people with kidney disease.
Eight-year-old Jessica and five-year-old Oliver Rix are taking part in the National Kidney Federation’s (NKF’s) Best Foot Forward event, which asks fundraisers to walk or run 60,000 steps throughout the month of June to support people living with kidney conditions.
The 60,000 steps, the equivalent of 25.5 miles, represent the 60,000 people in the UK who are on dialysis or have received a kidney transplant.
Mum Emma said: “In September 2015, Jessica and Oliver’s father, Dave, was diagnosed with end-stage renal failure with no warning.
“His kidneys were at two per cent and he needed to have dialysis straight away. He was on dialysis at Southend Hospital for 10 months and then was lucky enough to have a transplant at the Royal London Hospital on the July 22, 2016.
“His brother Graham gave him one of kidneys and since then he’s been very healthy and hopefully that’ll continue.”
The Best Foot Forward challenge isn’t the first time the Rix’s have fundraised for the NKF, but it’ll be the first time Jessica and Oliver will have taken part.
“I’ve done lots of fundraising for the NKF – Choctober, the Water Challenge, etc,” Emma said. “When I saw this latest event I thought this was something we could all do as a family and put some onus on the children.
“I think it’s important for them to challenge themselves a bit, especially for a worthwhile cause such as the NKF.”
Pete Revell, head of marketing and fundraising at the NKF, said: “We are delighted that the Rix’s are supporting us once again. I really hope they not only raise lots of vital funds for our charity but also raise awareness of kidney disease.”
Jessica and Oliver are close to passing their fundraising target and are determined to raise as much money as they can.
“We spent a lot of time during lockdown one shielding as a family and spent a lot of time together.” Emma said. “Now things are getting back to normal, we are missing the family time we had so this challenge will get us back walking together!”
You can support Jessica and Oliver at www.justgiving.com/fundraising/JessandOlly
More information about kidney disease can be found at www.kidney.org.uk