A DEDICATED five-year-old took on a walking challenge to raise money for her sick baby sister and a children’s hospital charity.

Amberley Rice from Horsham has always paid regular visits to her younger sister Autumn, who was born at the Princess Royal Hospital in Haywards Heath last year and has since been treated at the Royal Alexandra Children’s Hospital in Brighton.

Amberley and Autumn’s mum Sophie said: “Autumn has been in and out of hospital for tests and treatment over the last 18 months and this has affected us all greatly.

“It’s a world no-one knows about until they have a sick child.

“While you are in hospital your world shrinks down to very simple elements of waiting to speak to staff about your baby and what you can do to help them. But throughout all of it our whole family were made to feel special and cared for.”

Sophie, who did not want to specify the nature of Autumn’s illness, said Amberley was keen to help the hospital which cares for her baby sister.

Sophie spotted a 5k challenge on the website for Rockinghorse, the official charity for the Royal Alexandra Children’s Hospital.

She said: “Amberley has always been interested in the running I have done for Rockinghorse and when I suggested the 5k she was really excited to be supporting the hospital that looks after Autumn.

“We talked about the kind of things that the money might go towards, things like the toys she had played with and equipment such as heart and blood pressure monitors that helped Autumn.”

Sophie helped Amberley choose a walking route through her favourite woods at St Leonards Forest in East Horsham.

The five-year-old set up a crowdfunding page and has raised almost £300 so far.

Ryan Heal, chief executive at Rockinghorse, said: “We are always blown away by what our supporters do for us but seeing younger supporters stretch themselves is incredible.

“Amberley really is a Rockinghorse Hero and we wish her every success with her fundraising in the future.

“This year has certainly been a struggle for us, as we have seen at least £50,000 wiped off our fundraising in the last few months. It’s important people understand that whatever they can do, whatever their age, can really make a difference.”

To donate, go to justgiving.com/fundraising/amberleys5kwalk.