Going the extra mile for Born Free

Born Free Junior Ambassador, 12-year-old Thea, explains why she has chosen to challenge herself this year to raise vital funds for wildlife, and why you should consider it too!

A wild lioness running through grassland

© George Logan

A young girl holding a small dog with lakes and mountains in the background

Thea Caine and her dog Dora

“Hi Everyone, I’m Thea and I’ve been fundraising for Born Free since I was five years old.  

“Can you believe there are only around 23,000 lions left in the wild?! And so many other species are declining too, we need to do something before it’s too late.

“Born Free make such an amazing difference, by protecting wild animals from exploitation and conserving threatened species and their natural habitats. I love animals and supporting Born Free to keep wildlife in the wild is very important to me. So, this year I’ve signed up for my hardest challenge yet, the Junior Great North Run! I love sports but I’m definitely more of a swimmer than a runner, so 4k will not be easy!

“First things first, my training plan. My best friend Charlotte and I are doing this together, so we started in February by going on increasing longer walks with our dogs Dora, Maddie, Dax and Rocket. Once we can easily walk the 4k we’re going to use the run/walk method, gradually building up to less walking and more running! While we hope we can run the full distance by September, I think the most important thing about any challenge is to have fun! I’ve done all sorts of fundraising challenges from a week of big cat themed arts and crafts, and activity challenges including Born Free’s Big Cap Nap and swimming 5km – find something that works for you.

“So how do I get donations? I love setting up fundraisers through JustGiving.com, so friends and family all over the world can add their support. Born Free even has free graphics you can download to jazz up your JustGiving page! It’s important to set up your page in plenty of time before your challenge and keep it open for a few weeks after to maximise the donations you receive. Remember to keep sharing your progress and how it went on the actual day.”

A young girl with her arms outstretched, with a medal around her neck and wearing a Born Free running vest

Need a bit more guidance?

"Register for one of Born Free’s Go Wild Fundraising Pack. It can give you top tips and guidance to make your fundraiser a success!

“No one can do everything, but everyone can do something, and together we can make a difference. So why not think about challenging yourself this year and downloading the fundraising pack for Born Free to make a real difference for wildlife.”

It’s never been simpler to set yourself and challenge and fundraise for Born Free. Click below to find out how you can get started, and raise funds to protect wildlife.