Army Major Fights For Daughter's Future With 700 Mile Trek Across Britain - Barefoot
How far would you go for your child? Luckily it's a question not too many people are faced with, but for Army Major Chris Brannigan it's very much real life... and the answer: the length of the UK, barefoot.
Chris, 40, and his wife Hengameh Delfaninejad, 42, were left heartbroken when their little girl, Hasti, now eight, was diagnosed with a rare genetic condition called Cornelia de Lange Syndrome (CdLS) in 2018.
CdLS leaves children with severe mental health challenges which often get worse from puberty. They suffer from seizures and severe anxiety - with no cure or treatment.
But, like any little girl, Hasti has dreams about what she wants to do when she grows up. In the future, Chris' daughter wants to become a dancer and chef - now he's doing his bit to make this a reality.
Chris and Hengameh set up their own charity, Hope For Hasti, and on Monday 6 July, Chris embarked upon a gruelling trek from Land's End to Edinburgh to raise money for pioneering research to help find a treatment.
They are also urging people to sign a petition asking the government to review its National Framework for Rare Disease, encouraging them to invest in research, earlier diagnosis and cutting edge treatments to give people who are affected hope.
View this post on Instagram•DAY 10• (Wednesday 15th July) An amazing day, supported by guys from 1 Royal Anglian who travelled from far and wide to walk alongside Chris. Cracking job guys! Pain high (as evidenced by the latest footdate) but morale even higher due to the good food and even better company. https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/barefootacrossbritain #hopeforhasti #barefootsoldier #700miles #barefootacrossbritain #thisisbelonging #warminster #bruton #somerset #bbcsomerset @britisharmy @1royalanglian_vikings
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With the future for Hasti uncertain unless a treatment is found, Chris knows it's a race against time to acquire the funding they need.
He said: "The support we've received so far has been incredible, but we know we can't do it on our own - every penny is vital to achieving our goal to help Hasti, and other children like her.
"It's what any parent would do to ensure the best for their child, and we won't stop fighting for a better future for those affected."
He added: "I've been deployed on operations twice before - I see this as my third tour of duty; to fight to create a treatment for my daughter and other children like her.
"When the pain and exhaustion gets too much and I want to give up, I just remember why I'm doing this - to give my little girl the future she deserves."
Please share using the hashtag #HopeForHasti. You can donate here.
You can also follow Chris' journey on Instagram @hopeforhasti.
Featured Image Credit: Instagram/@hopeforhasti