A determined four-year-old overcame her own limitations to compete in a sponsored swim to raise money for research into miscarriage, stillbirth and premature birth.
Avid swimmer and Disney princess fan, Lillian Baldwyn from Deddington, raised a whopping £650 for national baby loss charity, Tommy’s during Water Babies Bucks and Beds sponsored Splashathon at the Frank Wise School.
Dressed as Snow White,and with dad, Sam, in tow, Lillian swam a sponsored width of the pool as part of the annual Splashathon event this year with the theme of ‘Pirates and Princesses’.
Lillian was born with hip dysplasia and congenital hypothyroidism or under-active thyroid which can cause tiredness and muscle aches and cramps. Undeterred she took on the challenge in support of her auntie Emma and uncle Stephen, who sadly lost their baby, Lawrence, during pregnancy earlier this year.
Lillian's mum, Kathryn, said: “As a family, we were really pleased to be able to support this fantastic charity.
“Lillian worked so hard to raise so much money, in spite of the health complications she struggles with. I know all parents are proud of their children, but we’re extra proud of how much she wanted to do this, for her auntie and uncle.
She added: “It was lovely to be able to honour the memory of my nephew and Lillian’s cousin, Lawrence, who was sadly born too soon. My sister and brother-in-law came to cheer Lillian on, and were over the moon to see her splashing around and working so hard to complete the challenge.
"Splashathon perfectly combined the three things Lillian loves more than anything in the world; swimming, family and fancy dress.”
Tamsin Brewis, owner of Water Babies Bucks and Beds which teaches thousands of new-borns, toddlers and pre-schoolers to swim, presented the Lillian with a number of prizes, to thank her for her family’s efforts and for raising the most money
Lillian’s younger sister, Charlotte, also took part in the challenge and despite only being 18 months old, the tot also raised much-needed cash for the worthy cause.
Kathryn said: “Tamsin visited us at home to personally thank Lillian and gave her a huge Peppa Pig toy, a book of princess stories and a free term of lessons too. Water Babies has already made such a massive impact on our lives, so being thanked by Tamsin for a job well done was very special for Lillian.
"Thanks to Water Babies, Lillian and Charlotte are both confident in the water and love swimming. I’m so pleased that Water Babies have been a part of their lives and opportunities, like Splashathon, are a chance for us to support families who have experienced baby loss.”
Thanks to the hard work of Lillian, Charlotte and other little swimmers around the counties, Water Babies Bucks and Beds raised a total of £36,008 for Tommy’s.
Tamsin said: "My thanks go out to all of the wonderful children, parents and grandparents who worked so hard to support our fundraising efforts for Tommy’s. Thanks to all of their hard work, we’ve raised even more than we did last year.
"Tommy’s rely on charitable donations and the £650 that Lillian raised will do so much for so many people.”
To find out more about Water Babies Bucks and Beds click here.