Norfolk family joins global Team 26x26 to raise funds for communities affected by coronavirus in Bangladesh

Team 26x26 aims to walk/run/cycle 26 marathons by 26th April as part of The 2.6 Challenge for AzuKo.

AzuKo, like so many charities across the UK, has been hugely impacted by the cancellation of thousands of fundraising events due to COVID-19. In response, the organisers of the biggest mass participation sports events across the country have come together to create a new campaign to save the UK’s charities – The 2.6 Challenge (held on 26th April).

AzuKo is protecting families living in abject poverty in Bangladesh during this crisis, and reached out to its supporters for help. Hilary Battye, her daughters Philippa and Helena, and niece Liv Barnett answered the call. The Norfolk-based family has joined international ‘Team 26x26’, with 26 members (23 people + 3 dogs) from Hong Kong to Bangladesh, Italy, UK and USA. Together they are walking, running and cycling every day from Sunday 19th April to reach 26 marathons distance (1097.17km) by Sunday 26th April.

Hilary Battye said, we are so lucky compared to many and anything we can do to raise funds to support those who need our help and also support the wonderful work undertaken by charities such as AzuKo, we will.”

The Battye family are long term supporters of AzuKo, with architect Philippa Battye volunteering on projects in both UK and Bangladesh to improve living conditions for vulnerable communities.

The funds they raise will deliver vital hygiene supplies to families in need, train local leaders in good hygiene, share virus prevention information and provide PPE for AzuKo’s frontline staff and volunteers.

Jo Ashbridge, Director of AzuKo said, “This event could really be a lifesaver to so many. Money raised for AzuKo enables us to protect communities in areas where there is no safety net. The outbreak of COVID-19 is affecting people across the globe, but it will undoubtedly hit the most vulnerable in our societies the hardest - those with limited access to healthcare, support and protection.”

Team 26x26 are documenting their gruelling challenge on Facebook:

Donations can be made via Virgin Money Giving:




Ms Philippa Battye: 07837 638 539 /


  • The 2.6 Challenge



The campaign, The 2.6 Challenge, is held on Sunday 26th April 2020 – what should have been the date of the 40th London Marathon, the world’s biggest one day annual fundraising event, which raised £66.4 million for charities in 2019. The 2.6 Challenge is open to anyone of any age – the only requirement is that the activity must follow Government guidelines on how to exercise safely at this time.

“For many of the UK’s charities, the day of the London Marathon is the biggest fundraising day of the year,” said Hugh Brasher, Co-Chair of MSO and Event Director of London Marathon Events. “One of the founding pillars of the London Marathon was ‘to show how the family of mankind can be united’. We hope that The 2.6 Challenge… will embody that spirit and inspire people, families and communities to fundraise for their chosen charity to help Save the UK’s Charities. Right now, our vulnerable members of society need the help of charities more than ever before.”

The mass-participation events organisers behind The 2.6 Challenge are: Human Race, parkrun, The Great Run Company, Run 4 Wales, Grounded Events, London Landmarks, Virgin Sport, Limelight Sports, Threshold Sports, Running High and London Marathon Events. The design and website has been created by Studio Republic and the social media campaign by LiveWire Sport. Both agencies are working pro bono. The campaign is supported by the Charities Aid Foundation, the Institute of Fundraising, the Small Charities Coalition, the Office for Civil Society, Sport England, Let’s Do This, Virgin Money Giving and JustGiving.

  • AzuKo


The 2.6 Challenge:

COVID-19 response:

AzuKo is an architecture charity, registered in England and Wales (no. 1156354). We design with disadvantaged communities and empower them to create the world they dream of. We are driven by the belief that people hold the answers to the challenges they face. As designers, architects, and engineers we simply light the fire. Access to, and provision of, water, sanitation and hygiene facilities are key aspects of our work.

“AzuKo is an organisation that places people at the centre of its work. It provides the necessary tools to allow them to identify their own problems and develop their own solutions. AzuKo harnesses the skills, experience and knowledge that already exists within communities.” – Julie, supporter

Additional high-resolution images available on request.

Press release distributed by Pressat on behalf of AzuKo, on Friday 24 April, 2020. For more information subscribe and follow

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Norfolk family joins global Team 26x26 to raise funds for communities affected by coronavirus in Bangladesh