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Alford youngster Morgan laps lochs to raise hundreds for NHS charities

Morgan Shand. Picture by Paul Glendell
Morgan Shand. Picture by Paul Glendell

A north-east youngster has completed more than 100 laps around the lochs by his house to raise money for NHS charities.

Morgan Shand, 10, lives on a fishery near Alford and was encouraged to take up the challenge by some of his cousins.

The Alford Primary School pupil had originally aimed to run five laps of a large loch, seven of a medium loch and take 48 trips round a smaller one.

But, pushing himself further as he neared his goal, Morgan ended up completing the whole challenge twice – including a lap with one of his pet ducks.

His cousins Isla, 12, Jessica, 8, and three-year-old Millie, who live in England, joined in with hundreds of jumps on trampolines and running through fields.

During lockdown the children wanted to show their appreciation for the “wonderful work” of the NHS through a series of tasks, which they named the 5/7/48 Challenge.

They were inspired by the fact the organisation was created on July 5 1948 and initially hoped to raise £200 for NHS Charities Together.

So far they have multiplied this by seven – with £1,400 in donations and hundreds of pounds more in gift aid.

Millie, Morgan, Jessica and Isla with their medals for completing the challenge.

Morgan’s aunt, Vicky Parkinson, said: “I’m really proud of all of them.

“It’s such an uncertain time and it’s given them something to focus on.”

The youngsters’ achievement has been made even more special for Morgan.

His mum works for NHS Grampian and has been living near Aberdeen, away from the rest of the family in Alford, to avoid infecting them with coronavirus.

Morgan’s nana, who he stays with at the fishery, is also a retired nurse.

Mrs Parkinson said: “We’ve got a WhatsApp group and at the end of the day they’ll all say what they’ve done.

“It is so nice for them to speak to each other from different parts of the country and share something positive.

“Morgan’s mum has been staying near Aberdeen so they can only community via phone and video-calls just now.

Morgan Shand. Picture by Paul Glendell

“So this is something nice for his mum as well, to recognise her achievements at work.”

To donate, visit: justgiving.com/fundraising/5748nhschallenge

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