A 12-YEAR-OLD schoolgirl is taking on an epic walking challenge to raise awareness and funds for the mental health charity Mind.

Hannah Gee, from Lychpit, said that the pandemic and its effects on mental wellbeing motivated her to do something to help.

Over 93 days, the Bishop Challoner Catholic School pupil is walking one million steps - an average of 10,752 steps a day with no rest days.

She told the Gazette: “I chose the charity MIND because, people struggling with mental health is a massive thing. Especially because of how the pandemic has affected so many people in so many different ways. People deserve to get the help they need and it is important to know there is help out there.”

She added: “ I think we all know someone who has struggled with mental health problems and it would make them so happy if they could get the help they needed. This is why MIND is such an important charity. You don't realise how many lives you could save if you donate to this charity.”

Hannah says that she chose a walking challenge to tie in with the benefits exercise has on wellbeing.

“Walking is very good for your mental health. I've enjoyed doing this challenge and, even though it can be hard some days, I’ve still made sure I got my steps in and that gives you a sense of achievement,” she said.

Hannah began her challenge on March 19, and will complete it on June 19. She has so far raised more than £1,400, and thanks all those who have helped her along the way.

She said: “So many people have supported me doing this challenge and I can't thank them enough. My Grandad took lots of people fishing, and they donated to my page in return. He raised a lot of money and I am very proud of him.

“So far, this challenge has been really fun and it’s nice to get out walking. Thank you to everyone who has supported me."

Hannah’s mum, Helen, added: “We are so proud of Hannah. She is working so hard every day to make sure she gets her steps in. She has been so determined to make sure she does her daily steps and has been walking at every opportunity. She is an amazing young lady.

She continued: “We have been so touched with everyone's kindness and generosity. Family, friends and complete strangers have all donated and sent messages of support. It's very heartwarming how kind everyone has been.”

To support Hannah’s ‘One Million Steps for Mind’ challenge visit: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/hannah-gee-mind