A DOCTOR whose premature daughter was cared for by the Oxford neonatal unit she works on every day is running 12 races in 12 months to support the children's hospital.

Ria Evans-Fry's second daughter Beatrix was born almost three months early last year, spending around 10 weeks in the hospital before she was strong enough to come home.

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The 34-year-old, who lives in Ambrosden, near Bicester, said: "Unfortunately a few weeks after Beatrix came home she became unwell and had several episodes where she stopped breathing."

The baby had to be admitted to the Paediatric Critical Care Unit at Headington's John Radcliffe Hospital, but despite the health scare Beatrix is now a healthy 16-month-old.

Oxford Mail:

Beatrix at Oxford Children's Hospital

Determined to give back for the 'fantastic' support she received since January the mother-of-two has been running a half marathon each month to raise funds for Oxford Children's Hospital, plus charities SSNAP and the Ronald Macdonald House which helped the family during both hospital stays.

She said: "During Beatrix’s stay on the paediatric critical care unit, I was lucky enough to benefit from a room at the Ronald McDonald house in the hospital.

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"This was an amazing free home from home. It allowed us to maximise the time spent with Beatrix whilst she was most unwell, save money on travelling to and fro, whilst still allowing us to rest and spend some more ‘normal’ family time together."

Explaining why she was taking on such a mammoth challenge, she said: "I felt like it needed to be something big.

Oxford Mail:

Beatrix with her big sister Flo

"It seemed fitting as well because Beatrix's journey was more a marathon than a single race."

She added it had been 'odd' to be on the same unit she works on each day as she knew all the staff but that it meant she was even more aware of how important extra funds would be.

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Since starting her year-long challenge, she has had to miss one half marathon in June due to injury but will be taking on two this month to make sure she completes 12 in 12 months.

This will include 11 half marathons and one full marathon, which she will do in November.

The paediatric doctor has already raised more than £1,500.

To donate visit justgiving.com/companyteams/Beatrix.