Almost everybody has a reason to walk. But some people have more reasons than most. Even if that means walking barefoot.
Chris Brannigan, an army Major in the UK military is on another mission. This time it’s to save the life of his daughter, Hasti. The 9-year old has been diagnosed with a rare developmental disorder called Cornelia de Lange Syndrome (CdLS).
Last year Major Brannigan completed a barefoot walk covering 700 miles. He walked across the entire length of the UK from Land’s End to Edinburgh.
This year, the fundraiser’s target is even more ambitious: to walk barefoot 1200 miles across the United States from Maine in the east coast to Florida on the west coast.
His first stop will be North Carolina to visit the laboratory developing the treatment for CdLS.
After last year’s excruciating excursion, Major Brannigan said he would never walk barefoot again. The pain was harsh. This time he’s targeting an extra 500 miles, a challenge that will involve 53 consecutive days of walking barefoot.
Walking for Good
The medical research costs involved in developing a cure for Cornelia de Lange Syndrome runs into millions of pounds. The fundraising target is £2.5m. Around £900,000 has been raised to date.
So far, clinical trials for CdLS are going well. Researchers are hopeful that an effective gene therapy treatment will be available next year. The first step will be to test its efficacy.
However, the treatment can only move forward if funds are available – hence the reason for Major Brannigan to embark on a tortuous journey.
The pain of walking barefoot is nothing compared to the thought of his daughter’s health deteriorating.
He told the BBC:
“When I look at Hasti I see this amazing little girl. I sometimes don’t see her challenges but I know she will get worse from puberty. She’s 10 in December and we’re just in this gut-wrenching race against time.”
Children with CdLS can improve their quality of life with this treatment. But they need your help. To support Major Brannigan in his endeavour, visit their GoFundMe page and pledge a donation.
Sweatcoin also intends to promote walking for good. We have developed a mobile app that is designed to encourage people to improve their health by walking. For every 1000 steps, you make you earn 1SWC, a digital token that can be used to purchase merchandise with over 300 partners.