AN INSPIRATIONAL runner has raised over £1,000 for a children’s charity after being told she may never be able to walk properly.
Nikki Robertson was born with a medical condition called Hydrocephalus, which is caused by a build-up of fluid on the brain and can be fatal if left untreated.
Her parents were told that her quality of life could be severely impacted and it took two attempts until an operation to fit a ‘shunt’ was successful to drain excess fluid from her brain.
The 29-year-old from Ayton, Berwickshire has defied the doctors’ predictions however, and recently raised £1,300 for the Edinburgh Children’s Hospital Charity (ECHC) by completing the Great North Run.
She said: “The staff at the Borders General where I was born told my parents that the outlook could be fairly bleak and I was operated on when I was only days old.
“The first operation didn’t work properly and then, even after a successful second one, I was in and out of the hospital a lot and missed lots of school days.
“I had to wear splints when I was younger because of the Hydrocephalus and it was sometimes difficult to get around.”
Nikki’s incredible feat comes 30 years after her parents raised funds for the charity through various fundraising efforts such as dances and head shaving.
She completed the 13 mile run around the North East of England for ECHC to give back to the charity and the Royal Hospital for Sick Children after spending countless nights there when she was younger.
She continued: “The ECHC is so close to my heart so it feels amazing to be able to give them something back.
“I’ve always wanted to complete the challenge of doing The Great North Run and to combine it with raising the money for such a brilliant charity was perfect.
“It was a brilliant day and great to follow in the footsteps of my mum and dad, who raised funds for the charity to show their gratitude for everything it did while I was unwell.
“I spent a considerable amount of time in the hospital and without its lifesaving treatment, there’s no doubt I wouldn’t be here today.”
ECHC support the work of the Royal Hospital for Sick Children so that young people there can be a child first and a patient second.
Sue Diamond, Community Fundraising Manager at ECHC, said: “It’s a truly remarkable feat to complete a half marathon at any time but given all that Nikki has been through in her younger years, it’s all the more impressive.
“It’s always lovely to hear about different generations of the same family donating to the ECHC as has happened with Nikki following in her parents’ footsteps.
“We’re all so grateful for the terrific amount Nikki has managed to raise and it’ll make such a difference to the lives of the young people currently at the hospital.”
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