A nine-year-old Qatar student who set himself the challenge of running 100 miles in 100 days to raise money for children with cancer has finished his final mile – and smashed his fundraising total.
Finn Froud began his feat in Doha in May this year, and over the following three months ran in three continents during searing, summer temperatures and humidity.
His initial aim was to raise around QR1,600 (GBP300) to buy toys for the children’s cancer ward at Hamad General Hospital. He was inspired by his cousin Callum Murray and a family friend who had recently been treated for cancer.
By the end of week one and after the first seven miles, he had already received donations worth QR10,000, and with the challenge complete he has raised QR70,000 – more than 40 times his original target.
Money is still being pledged daily, as his online fundraising page remains live until the end of this month.
Finn, who will go in to Year 5 at Doha College West Bay, ran the first half of his 100 miles in Qatar, supported by school friends, family, teachers and other residents from organizations across Qatar.
During a six-week family holiday to the US, he kept up his daily miles in New York, North Carolina and Florida, where the intense heat and humidity meant he had to get up early in the morning to get his run in before it got too hot.
He then traveled to Hawick in southern Scotland to complete the challenge and ran his final mile with his 11-year-old cousin, who had been undertaking a similar charity challenge over the same period to raise money for CCLASP, a Scottish support group for families of children with cancer and leukemia.
Callum is currently in remission after he was diagnosed with leukemia several years ago, and underwent treatment in Scotland.
The pair were joined by a crowd of 500 supporters of all ages, from toddlers to grandparents, who ran, walked and cycled the final mile with the two boys through the town’s Wilton Lodge Park, and cheered them over the finish line.
“It has been fab. The last day was really good, I was excited to run with so many people. I enjoyed it, but now I’m happy that it’s finished,” Finn told Doha News.
After doing 44 miles in sultry, humid conditions in the US, Finn had been getting tired, his dad, Gary, said.
“He really perked up again in Scotland. The weather was cooler and he was running with his cousin. The final day was a really good atmosphere – hundreds of people came out to support the boys and run with them,” he added.
In addition to those joining them in Scotland, other friends and family members ran the final mile in solidarity with the boys in locations around the world, from the Gulf to Japan.
“We are really proud of him,” his dad said. “Through the whole thing, he never complained once about doing the runs, even when it was hot and he had to wake up early. He’s delighted to have raised so much money.”
Spending the money
Doctors from Hamad Hospital have contacted Finn to thank him for his endeavors and have invited him to join a team to decide how best to spend the money he has raised, Gary said.
And Finn is already planning to follow up on his venture with another fundraising effort next year.
“I’m thinking about my next challenge – maybe I’ll do 100 miles in a wig next time,” he said.
You can donate on Finn Froud’s YouCaring page here.