An eight-year-old boy has raised £770 for the Wales Air Ambulance as a thank you for helping to save his life. 

Cian Evans, of Pontardawe, was just two-years-old when he was airlifted to the University Hospital of Wales after being involved in a crash on the M4 near Port Talbot that sadly killed his mum, Rebecca Evans.

Cian suffered two broken legs, a fractured skull and a bleed between his brain and skull. Despite horrific injuries, Cian battled through and is now a happy and healthy eight-year-old, who loves playing football and playing outside.

Back in April, Cian signed up for the Wales Air Ambulance’s annual fundraising campaign, Walk Wales - a virtual walking challenge in which he had to walk 100k throughout the month of May.

His dad Alex said Cian was extremely keen to take part, having been brought up knowing how the Wales Air Ambulance had helped saved his life and the vital work the Charity does. When Cian was three-years-old he attended the official opening of the Charity’s headquarters in Dafen, Llanelli, where he presented the then Prince of Wales, King Charles III, with a jar of local honey.

He said: “Every time Cian see’s the helicopter in the sky he always says, ‘that is my helicopter’ and tells people he met the King! When we told him about Walk Wales he was excited to take part. We made him his own personalised t-shirt and he bought a smart watch out of his own money to keep track of his kilometres.

“I was surprised how well he took to the challenge especially as the month of May started off rainy and cold. He walked every day and was fitting in the kilometres before school and in between his football practice and matches.

“I also gained a lot from it as well. It was really nice going out with Cian and enjoying quality father and son time together. I am incredibly proud of him. I did not expect Cian to raise so much money and I am incredibly pleased for him. He was excited to receive his medal and he is already looking forward to the next fundraiser!

“I am still surprised that the service is a Charity and relies on public donations to operate. Unfortunately, we know personally how vital the service is and would encourage people to donate to the Wales Air Ambulance.”

Cian, who attends Neath Abbey Primary School, asked friends and family to sponsor him and he kept his supporters updated with photos and video messages on social media every week. Cian ended the challenge by climbing to the top of Pen Y Fan Mountain for the first time.

The Walk Wales Challenge raised £28,257 in total by people signing up to take part and donating to the Charity. The Wales Air Ambulance needs to raise £8 million every year to ensure it can carry on its lifesaving work.

Cian said he thoroughly enjoyed taking part in the Walk Wales challenge.

He said: “I wanted to do the challenge because they saved my life when I was younger. It was hard but fun. I took my two dogs, Bear and Poppy, on the walks who definitely enjoyed it!

“My favourite walks were walking up Pen Y Fan and Corn Du mountains in the Brecon Beacons, Neath canal where I saw lots of fish, and I even saw llamas while out walking.

“I am pleased I raised £770 from friends, family, and lots of other kind people.

“I would do the Walk Wales Challenge again and would like to raise more money for the Wales Air Ambulance. It’s important because it help lots of people if they get badly hurt and need to go to hospital. Thank you to everyone at Wales Air Ambulance for helping me and other people throughout Wales.”

Since its inception on March 1, 2001, the Charity has carried out more than 45,000 missions and provides vital 24/7 emergency cover for those who face life-threatening illness or injuries.  

Known as a ‘Flying Emergency Department’ due to the consultant-led care it offers, the air ambulance service in Wales is delivered via a unique Third Sector and Public Sector partnership.

Alex added: “We are forever grateful for the Wales Air Ambulance as if it didn't exist then Cian may not be here with us today.”