A BEREAVED Warwick businessman is embarking on a fund-raising challenge to give back to those who helped care for his late son.
Baabzi Miah, has pledged to walk and cycle a distance of 363 kilometres in aid of Mencap after already raising more than £10,000 for the NHS throughout the pandemic.
The businessman, who runs Baabzi Takeaway in Coten End, aims to walk the equivalent distance in kilometres as the number of days in his young son Adam’s life.
His challenge will commence on March 21, World Down Syndrome Day, in memory of Adam who was born with Down syndrome and pulmonary hypertension.
The 11-month-old died in 2017 after suffering complications due to flu.
Baabzi, who also has six other children, said his family would never forget the care they received during the ‘worst time in their lives’.
He said: “Although his time was short it is in Adam’s memory that I am driven to help raise money for fantastic organisations that helped my son in every way possible during those 363 days.
“Mencap does some truly inspiring work and I wholeheartedly back their ethos that everybody is an individual and they treat everyone they work with as individuals.
“It’s work like this and their expertise that means Mencap is close to my heart. I want to help raise funds to help them to continue to provide excellent programs, services and support within this area.
“I’m going to start this challenge with 5km a day and then increase the daily target by 1km daily so hopefully I’ll be completing it within six weeks.”
Fund-raiser Laura Bruce said: “I am truly honoured to be supporting Baabzi and his family with their fund-raising. It’s been such a difficult journey and helping them has been lovely. I have been supporting Baabzi for a number of years and he has already raised money for Mencap through activities in his takeaway. I am looking forward to supporting him throughout this year to raise an incredible £10,000.”
This challenge marks the latest fund-raiser since the launch of Baabzi’s Covid-19 NHS Appeal during the first lockdown last year and is in aid of the hospitals that cared for Adam – Heartlands and Birmingham Children’s Hospitals and Great Ormond Street Hospital.
He has now raised more than £10,000 through events including a charity night, a sponsored cycling challenge and even a skydive.
He and his team also donated surgical masks and food parcels to frontline workers as well as to the Helping Hands homelessness charity in Leamington.
He said: “Our incredibly personal and life-changing experience heavily impacted our lives. Losing a child left a massive vacuum and the only way that I
have been able to find much-needed comfort and peace has been this need to serve, to give back in some way.
“This has been a very personal journey for me and my family and it’s helped us heal. My family and I were cared for and lovingly supported by these wonderful people at the NHS during a harrowing time in their own lives. Nothing short of angelic teams of nurses and doctors tirelessly worked to save our baby boy, who sadly passed away after a brave battle to overcome his health challenges.
“I can never forget that and that’s why last year I raised money for the NHS and did whatever I could for them to show that support and respect that I have for them.”
Visit www.mencap.org.uk/donate to donate to Baabzi’s fund-raiser.