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Breathing Matters calls on supporters to join The 2.6 Challenge on Sunday 26 April 2020

Breathing Matters, like so many charities across the UK, has been hugely impacted by the cancellation of thousands of fundraising events due to COVID-19.

In response, the organisers of the biggest mass participation sports events across the country have come together to create a new campaign to raise vital funds to help our fundraising and save the UK’s charities.

The campaign, The 2.6 Challenge, will launch on Sunday 26 April 2020 – what should have been the date of the 40th London Marathon, the world’s biggest one day annual fundraising event, which raised £66.4 million for charities in 2019.  The challenge will last for a week. The 2.6 Challenge is open to anyone of any age – the only requirement is that the activity must follow the Government guidelines on exercise and social distancing and remember to stay local.

From Sunday 26 April 2020, we are asking you to dream up an activity based around the numbers 2.6 or 26 and fundraise by donating on the Breathing Matters’ 2.6 Challenge donation page or by creating your own 2.6 Challenge fundraising page from the Breathing Matters Justgiving home page.

The 2.6 Challenge can be anything that works for you,” says Nick Rusling, Co-Chair of the Mass Participation Sports Organisers group (MSO) and CEO of Human Race. “You can run or walk 2.6 miles, 2.6km or for 26 minutes. You could do the same in your home or garden, go up and down the stairs 26 times, juggle for 2.6 minutes, do a 26 minute exercise class or get 26 people on a video call and do a 26 minute workout – anything you like. We want people to get active, have fun and raise money to help Save the UK’s Charities by giving money or raising funds for the charity close to your heart.”

“For many of the UK’s charities, the day of the London Marathon is the biggest fundraising day of the year,” said Hugh Brasher, Co-Chair of MSO and Event Director of London Marathon Events. “One of the founding pillars of the London Marathon was ‘to show how the family of mankind can be united’. We hope that The 2.6 Challenge, which starts on the day our 40th Race should have taken place, will embody that spirit and inspire people, families and communities to fundraise for their chosen charity to help Save the UK’s Charities. Right now, our vulnerable members of society need the help of charities more than ever before..”

Donna Basire, Fundraising Manager from Breathing Matters said “This event could really be a lifesaver to so many as money raised for Breathing Matters funds research into respiratory conditions such as pulmonary fibrosis, COVID-19, bronchiectasis and pneumonia.  You can do this at your own pace and in your own house or garden – so the challenge is open to everyone. All we ask is that you donate £26 to the Breathing Matters 2.6 Challenge page, or set up your own page and have your own target to raise – could you raise £260?”.

The mass-participation events organisers behind The 2.6 Challenge are: Human Race, parkrun, The Great Run Company, Run 4 Wales, Grounded Events, London Landmarks, Virgin Sport, Limelight Sports, Threshold Sports, Running High and London Marathon Events. The design and website has been created by Studio Republic and the social media campaign by LiveWire Sport. Both agencies are working pro bono.  The campaign is supported by the Charities Aid Foundation, the Institute of Fundraising, the Small Charities Coalition, the Office for Civil Society, Sport England, Let’s Do This, Virgin Money Giving and JustGiving.

For more information on The 2.6 Challenge, visit twopointsixchallenge.co.uk