Ross 'the smiler' donnan

Age: 8

home: Bookham, Surrey

Parallel challenge: 10k with push buddy mum clair


Ross’s dad Karl: “Ross has had epilepsy from birth and his brain is in a constant state of chaotic activity. He has a visual impairment, can’t sit, walk or talk and is dependent on his family and carers for everything. But he has always been great at one thing – smiling. 

“Ross loves watching rugby (much to my pleasure), being in the swimming pool and feeling the wind in his face. We’ve done a few sporting challenges together, including the Bookham 10k, and last year we held Ross’s very own triathlon where he and 25 other kids competed a kayak, a bike ride and a run – he even featured on Blue Peter!

 “Crossing the finish line at Ross’s triathlon was awesome and we look forward to the same feeling at Parallel London. Ross’s mum Clair will push him for the 10km and his brothers Finlay and Callum and I will be cheerleaders. If possible we’d like to put Ross in his walker just before the finish line so that he can try to cross it by himself. 

“To date we’ve raised £50,000 for charities that support kids like Ross and for epilepsy research. At Parallel London we aim to raise money for Shooting Star Chase, which helps Ross with respite. It’s also great motivation for us to stay fit and strong for Ross.”

Watch Ross’s triathlon story at

Top training tip: “Caring for a disabled child is exhausting and often the sofa in front of the TV is more attractive than doing exercise. Our tip is don’t sit down!”

Bulldozing barriers: “More ‘Changing Places’ style facilities at sporting venues, please.”

Our goal: “Ross is on the #roadto independent play.” 


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