Why I'm taking on the London Marathon for AWF


AWF trustee, Daniella Dos Santos, on running the London Marathon to raise vital funds for AWF.


"I have chosen to run the London Marathon for AWF as am I passionate about animal welfare and their work makes a real difference to the welfare of thousands of animals. It is a brilliant opportunity because, as a trustee, I am well aware that the AWF struggles for funds and resources to continue their vital worDaniellak.

Although happy, healthy animals is something we all care about, changing practice, policies and social norms to achieve this is a challenge in practice, and is where the vital work of the AWF comes in.  AWF funds ground breaking research into animal welfare issues, supports projects aimed at eradicating poor welfare and uses this to find practical solutions to animal welfare issues. It provides educational materials to both vets and animal owners, promoting welfare best practice. It also challenges the veterinary profession through debate to achieve better welfare. So far the AWF’s work has improved the health and welfare of thousands of animals but with today’s political and social landscape constantly evolving, and new diseases emerging, the AWF’s work remains invaluable.

Training; it's going…..well it's going. I’m not a natural runner (in fact I hate running!), so it is a challenge, not only mentally, but also in terms of scheduling. Working full time in clinical practice, including being part of an OOH rota means training must be factored in with military precision: so far some of my longer runs are planned for 4am! Each week consists of 3 runs, a day on the bike and a day dedicated to core and stretching. I have also entered the Hastings Half Marathon as part of my training schedule. For anyone who is unfamiliar with the town, it is full of very steep hills! My final long run of 22 miles prior to the big day is scheduled for when I am in Queensland, Australia for my brothers wedding. Hot and humid: if I can manage 22miles in those conditions the London Marathon should be a breeze, or at least I am trying to convince myself of that!

The AWF’s work ensures animals will continue to live happier and healthier lives for generations to come, but none of this is possible without funding. Your support will go a long way to achieving a world with continually improved animal welfare, so please, sponsor me in my attempt to complete the London Marathon. Your sponsorship and support is vital for the AWF to continue its amazing work"

Daniella is a small animal and exotics vet, currently working as Principle Exotics Vet at ParkVet Hospital in Kent and studying towards her Cert AVP Zoological Medicine. She is passionate about ethics and animal welfare and joined the AWF Board of Trustees just over a year ago.