A local dad from Handsworth has been crowned this week’s Charity Champion after raising over £4,000 for Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity.


Father of two, Ed Freshwater, 41 took on Birmingham’s half marathon to raise vital funds for Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity to say thank you for the care his son, Kip, received at the hospital.    

In May 2017, shortly after his first birthday, Kip was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia. Ed said: “It was without question the most terrifying experience of our lives. Our little boy, who had only just turned one, was suddenly facing this condition and we didn’t know what to do or how to react. The staff at the children’s hospital were incredible. They answered all of our questions and treated Kip so gently and with such kindness and encouragement – we felt safe in their hands.”

After 18 months in and out of hospital, Kip is now in remission and having daily chemotherapy at home, all his hair has grown back and he has learnt to walk and talk. Ed added: “We are so very proud of him.”

To give something back to the hospital, Ed turned to fundraising and took part in the half marathon a few months ago. He also encouraged many of his family and friends to take part too - including Kip’s big sister, five-year-old Millie who took on the Mini Run.

Ed commented: “I’ve done half marathons before, but nothing could compare to the intensely emotional feeling I felt during this challenge - the last mile I was totally overcome with emotion. As we were approaching the line, I saw my parents, my wife Sarah, Millie and Kip cheering me on – without them, I wouldn’t have made the last 200 yards. It was just the best feeling to give Kip a massive hug at the end.” 


Serena Daw, Public Fundraising Manager at Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity, said: “What an incredibly emotional experience for Ed. We’re so thankful he chose to say thank you to our hospital by supporting our charity. It’s always so inspiring to hear how families can turn their own challenges into something positive, by helping make a difference to others.

“The money they have raised will go towards supporting children on our Haematology and Oncology Unit’s, where Kip was cared for. It will help the staff fund equipment which will mean our patients and families get the best possible experience while they are with us.”

If you’d like to follow in Ed’s footsteps and take on the Great Birmingham 10k in May 2019, please visit bch.org.uk/Event/10k or call 0121 333 8506.