Top award for Hasti from Chief Scout

A GIRL from West Byfleet with a rare genetic condition has earned the Chief Scout’s Personal Award, only 11 of which were awarded nationally last year.

Hasti Brannigan, nine, was presented with the distinction, signed by the Chief Scout, Bear Grylls, at Birchmere campsite on Monday.

Hasti Brannigan shows off her Chief Scout’s Personal Award at Birchmere campsite, alongside dad Chris who was also honoured with the Commisioner’s Commendation Award

The award recognises Hasti’s achievements “in fundraising as well as success and hard work within the Scouts despite living with a life-limiting condition”.

Hasti’s father Chris, an Army major, was also honoured. He received the Commissioner’s Commendation Award for supporting Hasti on her journey through Scouting, and for raising more than £700,000 via the Hope for Hasti charity.

Chris is fundraising to find a treatment for Hasti’s Cornelia de Lange Syndrome (CdLS), and secured nearly £400,000 in a 700-mile barefoot walk from Land’s End to Edinburgh,

“It is truly amazing for Hasti to win such a rare award,” said Alison Hughes, leader of Hasti’s 1st West Byfleet Cubs pack.

“She is fantastic to be around, gets involved in everything and we’re so proud of her.

“It was great for Chris to win an award as well. He knew Hasti had been awarded hers, but he didn’t know anything about his own. The look on his face when he found out!”

Chris is hoping to take his fundraising past £1million, to go to clinical trials.

CdLS, for which there is currently no treatment, leads to reduced growth, developmental delay, feeding problems, speech and language difficulties, hearing problems and, in many cases, limb abnormalities. Some of the symptoms are progressive.

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