A motivated seven-year-old pupil from Wolverhampton, Florence Hooper, has raised £3,800 for Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity as thanks for the lifesaving care she received when she was a baby. 

This May, the Great Birmingham Run will return to the city with many choosing to run for the Children’s Hospital. As well as the 10k and Half Marathon distances, the run will also include the Mini and Junior run, which Florence took on last May. 

Florence was just nine-months-old when she was diagnosed with a congenital heart defect called Tetralogy of Fallot, which affects the blood flow through the heart.  

Shortly after her first birthday Florence received open heart surgery, which she says: “made my heart better.” Still a patient today, Florence is extremely grateful to the “magician” doctors and nurses who saved her life and was eager to say thank you, so decided to fundraise.  

Florence set herself the target of raising £150, but thanks to some videos she created promoting her fundraising, she saw her total sky-rocket to £1,000 even before the actual race day. When it did come, Florence was ready to hit the ground running, as she loves gymnastics and dance, and loves to be active. The 1.5km run was more of a challenge than she thought it would be, and she felt quite tired halfway through, but continued nonetheless and finished the race feeling so proud of herself. The money kept pouring in from generous family and friends, which saw her reach an incredible £3,800.  

Ryan, Florence’s dad, says: Florence still visits the Children’s Hospital once a year to see her doctor, which she absolutely loves. We are so lucky to have such a wonderful hospital on our doorstep. It’s a special place, and Florence wanted to say thank you for her care. 

We're so incredibly proud of her for tackling the run. She’s really got the bug for fundraising now, so we are planning more activity this year. 

Miranda Williams, Head of Public Fundraising for Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity, added: “Every day we see and hear about the amazing work that goes on inside our hospital and are so grateful to past and present patients who challenge themselves in support of other youngsters just like them. We’re so proud of Florence for taking on the Mini Great Birmingham Run. 

“The wonderful amount she raised saw her honoured with one of our 100 Heroes charity awards just this month, which recognises our top fundraisers of the year. Congratulations Florence!”