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How 10-year-old Ollie is raising thousands of pounds for a Preston baby bank

Posted on - 4th May, 2020 - 7:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Charities, People, Preston News
Ollie outside Tarleton Community Primary School
Ollie has been running to and from his school

A sporty schoolboy is using his daily lockdown exercise allowance to help Preston families in need by running the equivalent of a marathon.

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Ollie Ascroft, 10, has already smashed his fundraising target – pulling in over £3,000 for TippyToes Baby Bank charity – by running from his home to his temporarily closed school, Tarleton Community Primary in Hesketh Lane, every day over 14 days.

Having started his fundraiser on April 26, Ollie is using an app to track his daily distance of almost two miles, with the aim of notching up the equivalent of a marathon (26 miles) by the time he finishes.

TippyToes was founded in 2019 to provide essential items to families in desperate need around the county, such as milk formula, nappies, wipes, second-hand clothes, equipment, furniture, toiletries and donations.

The charity, which has helped more than 900 families over the last 12 months, has seen a huge rise in people needing its help during the coronavirus crisis.

Read more: A real-life fairy godmother is using her maternity leave to help Preston’s families

Ollie is the youngest person to raise funds for the charity, and it’s not the first time the youngster has impressed with his determination and sporting achievements – aged eight, he became the youngest ever karate blackbelt member of the Black Belt Leadership Academy in Hesketh Lane.

Read more: Young Charlotte fundraising for Rosemere with 26 activities for the 2.6 Challenge

Ollie was inspired to help the charity after reading about its crucial work and decided to use his time in lockdown to do something positive to help
families in need.

Ollie said: “I love sports and enjoy being active, so I wanted to use that to do something to help others while I’m off school and have the chance.”

Ollie with his running shoes
“Thoughtful, kind and caring” Ollie

His mum, Gemma, said: “Ollie has always been a very thoughtful, kind and caring boy, and he’s very aware that there are families who are really struggling at this difficult time, so I’m not surprised at all that he came up with this brilliant idea to help others.

“Initially, he was aiming to raise £500, but he’s already managed £2,500, and we’re extremely proud of him. The only downside to this is that I have to run all that way with him!”

Sue Wade, TippyToes founder, said: “We are amazed by Ollie’s determination and energy to carry out this feat at his young age. We are also astounded at his thoughtfulness and generosity to want to raise funds for our charity and we hope that it encourages others to set themselves personal challenges to also help support us! 

“The money Ollie raises will be helping us to assist so many families to get through this hugely challenging time.”

To make a donation, go to Ollie’s GoFundMe page.

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What do you think of Ollie’s challenge? Let us know in the comments.

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