#BeMoreWilliam and his amazing fundraisers!

16 Feb 2024

#BeMoreWilliam and his amazing fundraisers!

William Goodson (aka #BeMoreWilliam) has been part of the Tree of Hope family since 2019, having first met his Mum Emma at a parent information morning at Kids Therapy Works. Over the years his family have fundraised for garden adaptations, a specialist bed mobility equipment and contributed to a life changing house adaptation, to name just a few and have been going great guns with their fundraising to make all of these things possible. In 2023, William’s parents completely smashed their fundraising with a series of EPIC fundraising challenges which they named ‘Hundreds of Miles 4 Hundreds of Smiles’. Read on to find out about the variety of  challenges they took on!

To honour the amazing effort that William puts into life every day, and especially when faced with adversity, Emma and Andy (William’s parents) are undertook a huge number of challenges in 2023. William has Angelman syndrome, a severe neurogenetic condition and means  William has life-threatening epilepsy, a life limiting lung condition and has had support from a young age to support his movement, mobility and his motor function. The family have fundraised since 2019 but the need for their fundraising to increase was brought to the fore when William faced a fight for his life just before Easter 2023 after a routine operation led him down a path into level 2 respiratory failure, collapsed lungs, early sepsis and acute respiratory distress syndrome. Despite being only given a 20-40% chance of survival he is now back at school and very much enjoying a hectic social life once more!

Inspired by William’s positive outlook and his joy of giggling and smiling, Mum Emma and Dad Andy with little brother Eli in tow decided to launch their ‘Hundreds of Miles for Hundreds of Smiles’ challenge throughout the course of 2023 , with the aim of raising money for regular therapy sessions and various pieces of equipment including a running buggy/offroad wheelchair and a trike, so that William can join his family on adventures.

Between them, Emma and Andy completed 12 hardcore challenges over the course of the year, and mixed with fitting in training, both working full-time, caring for William, as well as Emma’s recovery from major knee reconstruction in September 2022, they certainly didn’t make things easy for themselves!

But it doesn’t end there! The dynamic duo started 2024 as they meant to go on with a New Year’s Eve run together. This year will also see Emma tackle her 5th and 6th world major marathons in Tokyo and Boston, and Andy will be running 10 (Yes,10) Ultra 50km marathons in 10 days in July!!  William’s needs are always at the forefront of their minds,  and so they are determined to raise as much money as possible to make his day to day life as comfortable as possible.

Telling us about the highs and lows of their fundraising year, Emma explained  “My hardest event was the Tour De Sizewell ride at work last year because I was still not recovered enough from Ride London and it was the hottest day of the year. Andy’s was the 200km due to the extreme fatigue of running for 30-hours.

Emma also told us said that the couple both enjoyed some incredible highs with “my favourite event being the Chicago marathon without a doubt, and Andy’s was between the 100-miler for surprising himself and the Chocathon because it was an accidental win! I also really enjoyed Andy’s achievements – I’m super proud of him!”

On discussing some of their most memorable moments, Emma recalled “I did manage to totally splash Andy in the face by ploughing through a muddy puddle… I hate mud so I avoid it usually at all costs, so Andy had no idea it was coming! She went onto say “I think it was a slow burn revenge from February 2012 where Andy jumped on a bottle of Lucozade at the Brighton Half and covered me head to foot in Lucozade sport!”

Congratulations to Emma and Andy on such a fulfilling (and busy) year of fundraising last year! We’re wishing them both all the luck with this year’s growing list of challenges and we’re delighted to be supporting and cheering them on! Follow #BeMoreWilliams Facebook page  to keep up to date with their progress or donate to  the Goodson’s Hundreds of Miles for Hundreds of Smiles fundraiser here:

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