Two best friends from St Albans have found a way to make a difference as the nation is plunged into lockdown yet again.
Sam and Seb, who are eight and seven years old, have decided to run 202.1km to raise money for wildlife charity World Land Trust (WLT) after being inspired watching David Attenborough documentaries and have raised an impressive total of over £3,000 so far.
Together they chose to support WLT in a bid to save as many animals as they can, as every £100 protects an acre of land and the animals that live there.
Both watched the A Life on our Planet documentary over the festive season and decided to launch the challenge to save all the animals rather than just one in particular.
Very excited to share the duo’s motivations, Seb said: “Every £100 we raise they save an acre. The reason we chose this charity instead of other charities that save animals is because they don’t just save one particular animal, they buy a whole acre and save all the animals in it.”
Sam’s mum Rebecca Johnson said that the boys chose running as a way to fuel their support for the charity and animals, after becoming avid runners over the lockdowns last year.
She said: “In the first lockdown the boys played football and cricket for the same club and those clubs closed down and we thought about what we could do, boys need to burn off their energy, so we thought of running.”
Seb’s mum Vicky added: “We were just struggling a bit, everything had stopped. We would run two or three times a week and everyone’s mood lifted.”
At the time of writing the boys had just started their challenge which runs until February 7 and both mums wanted to share how blown away they are with the support so far.
Vicky said: “Seb logs onto the JustGiving page every morning and he reads every message again and again. I think that means so much to them to see the messages of support.”
Seb was keen to add his favourite of the messages they have received so far, saying “I think the best message that I have ever had is probably ‘well done, I’ve just seen you run past our front door.’”
World Land Trust CEO Dr Jonathan Barnard said: “After the astounding conservation wins WLT saw in 2020, we were excited about what our supporters would go on to achieve in 2021 through us but nothing could have prepared us for Sam and Seb.
“After 2020, we know so many are wondering how to change the planet for the better this year and through their 30-day challenge, Sam and Seb have illustrated something WLT has seen over and over in our more than 30 years of history: when individuals act, we can make far more of a difference than we sometimes think.
“WLT patron Sir David Attenborough tells us that ‘if we take care of nature, nature will take care of us’ and this is precisely what Sam and Seb will achieve. Their support will mean the world to WLT partners – the conservation rangers we empower to save vulnerable habitats in the Americas, Africa, Asia and others.
“By donating the funds they raise to WLT’s Buy an Acre programme, Sam and Seb will be helping to create the reserves of tomorrow, new homes for endangered species. From us and our partners, we thank them and we will be cheering them on every step of their 30-day running challenge!”
Sam and Seb will be sharing the distance between them and you can donate at justgiving.com/fundraising/rebecca-andrew-johnson