SOUTHEND Saxons’ director of rugby Josh Ward is ready to go the extra mile in support of one of his students.

Ward combines coaching at Warners Bridge with teaching at the Harris Academy Riverside.

And he will soon be taking part in a 36 mile walk through the night, alongside fellow staff members, to raise funds for two charities helping a Year 9 pupil suffering with muscular dystrophy.

“Sadly there won’t be a cure within his lifetime and his condition is slowly deteriorating,” explained Ward.

“Every time there’s a birthday, instead of it being a celebration it’s more a sign of him getting weaker.

“And after reading a story his mum had done I thought we should be doing something to support him and his family.

“That’s what led to the walk happening and we’ll be raising funds for Duchenne UK and Little Havens, two charities that support the student very closely.”

The walk will begin at Chafford Hundred, where the student lives, on the evening of Thursday April 21 and will head to Little Havens before returning to Harris Academy Riverside where plenty of other activities are being planned.

“While the walk is going on we will also have a full on charity day at the school which we’re organising as well,” said Ward.

“We have a lot going on and hope to be able to raise £5,000.

“We’ll be increasing awareness too and the student will be waiting to lead us over the finish line so we’ll definitely make sure we get there.”

But it will require quite some effort to make it that far.

“We’ll be walking through the night,” said Ward.

“We will start from his home in Chafford Hundred and go to Little Havens which is 16 miles.

“From there we will walk back to our academy which is 20 miles so it will be 36 miles in total.

“We have 20 members of staff joining in and six or seven of us are doing the whole thing.”

The walkers have already raised more than £1,100 and can be sponsored here