Raising awareness Our blog Jarvis and Casper to 'lead' the 2.6 challenge Meet Jarvis and Casper. They are the Encephalitis Society's faces of the 2.6 Challenge which is being launched on Sunday. The top dogs – together with their humans, Julia and Ava – will be walking for the Encephalitis Society from Sunday to Thursday and are hoping you will join them in doing your own challenge. The coronavirus crisis has had a catastrophic effect on the charity sector as a whole, with thousands of events up and down the country being cancelled or postponed, resulting in billions of lost fundraising income. So, the organisers of the London Marathon - the UK’s biggest one-day fundraising event - have set up the 2.6 Challenge to give everyone the opportunity to help charities like us through this crisis. Seventy nine people were due to take on a challenge for the Encephalitis Society until the lockdown scuppered their plans, meaning we are losing out on much-needed money that funds our support services, research and work in general. How can you get involved? Decide on your 2.6 Challenge – get creative! There are no rules –but please follow government guidelines on how to exercise safely during this time. Visit https://twopointsixchallenge.justgiving.com/get-involved Search for and select The Encephalitis Society in the ‘search for a charity’ box Select either donate or fundraise depending on which you wish to do and then follow the prompts What can you do? Draw 26 rainbows Do 26 football keepie-uppies in a row Run 26 laps of your garden dressed in fancy dress Build the biggest lego tower in 2.6 minutes Challenge the kids to be silent for 2.6 days, 26 minutes or 2.6 minutes (depending on their age) Who can put on 26 items of clothing the fastest? Run, walk or cycle for 26 minutes and track it on Strava Or - if you are a dog owner - why not look to involve your pooch in some sort of challenge like Casper who is aiming to do a 2.6km walkies on Sunday and Julia and Jarvis who have set their sights on a 26 mile walk from Sunday to Thursday. We’re mutts about Casper and Jarvis! Jarvis Likes: Cheese, sunbathing, watching rugby and football on telly (so he can see the ball) Dislikes: Vacuum cleaners, Small yappy dogs His human Julia says: "We've had Jarvis since he was 11 weeks-old and we bought him because we thought he was a Cocker spaniel - hence the name Jarvis after Jarvis Cocker (from the band, Pulp). Over the next few months he just kept growing and growing and it soon became clear he wasn't a Cocker, most likely a Sprocker (cross between a Springer and a Cocker) so, the joke fell flat! Jarvis is a one person dog, and this person is me. He tolerates other members of the family, but will sit on my knee happily to cuddle. He will allow anyone to take him for a walk though, and is ball-crazy. All he wants to do is run for a ball and retrieve it, for hours and hours. I cannot tire him out, I just make him fitter!" Sponsor Jarvis Casper Casper and I (his human Ava) sat down over our cornflakes this morning for a little chat....it went something like this....Me: Casper I hear that you are becoming a well known dog?Casper: Yes!! I is! *nods* I help you at your charity the Encephalitis Society. You're the big cheese...Mmmmmm…..cheese I does LOVE cheese… they calls me the office dog, and they makes me pose sometimes and they takes pictures of me for something called Twitter...Me: Casper what would you say is your favourite toy?Casper: My tennisy Kong ball ball and the throwy thing that makes it go super super fast. weeeeee....Me: Can you run fast Casper?Casper: I haves me moments mom!Me: Casper, what would you say is your favourite food?Casper: Me favourite food is FOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOD!!! I Love FOOD. NomnomnomnomnomnomnomnonmnMe: OK Casper, we are doing an interview here, focus please.Casper: sorry mommy....Me: you can be sorry a lot can’t you CasperCasper: I cans....you sometimes calls me a furry terrorist don’t you momsy?Me: well yes I do? Why is that do you think?Casper: is it because I is naughty sometimes mommy?Me: Yes it is. We are still getting to know each other aren’t we and we are each learning each other’s boundaries. Do you want to tell people some of the naughty things you do?Casper: Weeeelll.....I don’t settle well yet do I mom, cuz I keeps thinking you is going to leave me and never comes back *hangs his head and a tear trickles out*Me: Do you want me to tell the nice people why that might be?Casper: Yes please cuz I don’t wants them to hates me.Me: nobody hates you Caspy. You lost your family you had been with for a long time didn’t you and then you ended up at the RSPCA where you weren’t very happy at all and so one day just before the lockdown started we came and adopted you. Sadly we don’t know much about you except that you are 6 so we are having to learn lots from each other. Do you want to tell them what else you do that’s naughty?Casper: I eats Poooooooo! Don’t I mommy?Me: yes you do don’t you, and mommy doesn’t like that one bit. But she thinks you might stop when you learn you don’t need to do bad things to get attention and that we love you anyway. We need to finish up now Caspy cos I’ve nearly finished my cornflakes. Shall we tell them what good things you can do before we go?Casper: Yeeeeessss! I sits, I gives you my pawsies, I always looks for you when we are out, and I loves my tummies rub a dub dubbed! I love you mommy!Me: I love you too, Caspy.