THE virus pandemic hasn’t stopped a mum’s unique fundraiser which has hit £10,000 and still has three months to go.

Sally Smith, 43, is completing a parkrun every Saturday for a year in aid the Wales Air Ambulance.

Despite the lockdown and parkruns being cancelled, the runner has been able to continue her challenge by completing a 5k ‘somewhere in Wales’ every Saturday.

Sally, who started on September 7, was inspired to do the challenge after an accident in June 2019 on the B5105 between Efenechtyd and Ruthin.

Olivia Alkir, from the Efenechtyd area, died in the crash. Mia Roberts and Sophie Davies were also involved and needed life-saving surgery for their internal injuries.

They were both in Stoke’s critical care unit in under 30 minutes, thanks to the Wales Air Ambulance.

Sally, of Ruthin, said: “We were so disappointed When we heard parkrun was cancelled we knew this was serious. If you have ever met parkrun organisers, you will know - they don’t cancel.

“We thought we would be able to at least continue together and with social distancing, but have had to go out on our own for over nine weeks now.

“As difficult as this is - we fully understand and agree with why.

“In all honesty, I didn’t think we would raise such an incredible amount - £10,000 is a lot of money.

“People are losing their jobs, are on reduced salaries, are working as key workers or are generally in a state of unknown.

“To keep receiving donations during this time is incredible.”

Sally, who works at Denbighshire County Council, knows Sophie’s family.

She decided to do the challenge when hearing how important the Wales Air Ambulance helicopters had been following the accident.

She has been supported in her task by son Kieran, who is friends with both Mia and Sophie.

“Kieran has been so supportive and has been out every Saturday mornings too,” Sally said.

“He’s quicker than me but it’s lovely to know that he is on the route with me.

Other parkrun members have also carried on running.

“Every Saturday morning, at 9am, we complete a 5K route from our homes.

“Manon Wilkinson [head of Sixth Form at Ysgol Brynhyfryd who has been supporting Sally in her challenge], lives in a rural area and has been able to find a beautiful, not hilly, 5k route.

“I have been running up to Efenychtyd and back or to Rhewl and back with my dog Milo.

“It has been hard.

“The hills, trying to find the motivation to keep going, having no one to talk to but more than anything, we are really missing the people that we met up with at Conwy and Penrhyn parkrun.

“The girls [Mia and Sophie], their families, and friends, strangers passing on the runs. We were never alone.”

Sally’s initial target was to raise £2,000 was the charity.

“The money is so desperately needed for Wales Air Ambulance, especially in the current circumstances,” Sally explained.

“A staggering £6.5million pounds is needed each year - that’s not including the extra £1.5 million to enable them to fly at night.

“Thank you to everyone for their continued support and donations. The messages of support and encouragement are worth their weight in gold, and to know that both girls are doing so well.

“Knowing Mia is back in her trainers and back running is all the motivation we need every week.”