A selection of stories from communities and voluntary organisations across Scotland
Kiltwalkers descend on Dundee
St Andrews to Dundee will be lined with tartan on Sunday as a record number of walkers are set to take part in the third Kiltwalk of the year.
Every pound raised by a Kiltwalker will receive a 40% boost, thanks to support from the Hunter Foundation and funds raised from last month’s charity dinner with former US First Lady Michelle Obama.
More than 325 Scottish charitable organisations are set to benefit, including Ninewells Hospital, Dwarf Sport Association and Fairview School in Perth.
Kiltwalk chief executive Paul Cooney said: “We launched the St Andrews to Dundee Kiltwalk last year and it was a huge success. With more than 2,300 participants signed up, this year will be even bigger. If you’ve not signed up yet, what are you waiting for? There’s still time to enter, and with three distances to choose from, your friends and family can join you.
“The Dundee walk, which begins at the magnificent Old Course in St Andrews and features the Tay Bridge, is among the most picturesque of all four Kiltwalks.”
Last year, 2,000 walkers raised a total of £375,000, including a 40% top up from Sir Tom Hunter and The Hunter Foundation, which was boosted by a fundraising dinner with Former US president Barack Obama.
Fife volunteer serves up a smile for over a decade
A Fife woman has become a crucial part of the local community thanks to over a decade of voluntary work supporting the elderly.
Betty Morrison, 75, from Dunfermline, has been volunteering at Bield’s Grants Bank sheltered housing development for 14 years, helping older members of the community lead enriched and independent lives.
Betty started volunteering at Grants Bank in 2004 while also working as a home carer for Fife Regional Council.
Four years later she announced her retirement but continued to lend a hand at the Bield development.
Today Betty heads up Grants Bank’s lunch club, a twice-weekly gathering for residents to socialise and tuck into a delicious spread.
Betty said: “I didn’t realise it had been as long as 14 years. I just love coming in. I get as much enjoyment coming in as I hope they get from me. At
the lunch club they can enjoy themselves and have conversations with other residents. It’s a good social event.
“Often the lunch consists of various soups, sandwiches and a main meal once a month delivered to the home. On Fridays we even have fish and chips delivered as an end of the week treat.”
Joel gatecrashes the Fringe for Stand Up To Cancer
Comedian Joel Dommett took on one of the most demanding challenges of his career to raise money and awareness for Stand Up To Cancer.
He attempted to gatecrash 100 Edinburgh Fringe Festival shows in 24 hours, drafting in his talented friends and festival-goers and calling on their support to get him from one show to the next in quick-fire time.
From the weird and wonderful, stand-up comedy to contemporary dance and big venues to living room enactments, Joel visited them all creating a huge buzz across the city, all in the name of charity.
He ping-ponging his way around Edinburgh to interrupt an average of one show every 15 minutes and rally support for Stand Up To Cancer which returns with full force later this year.
Joel is a passionate supporter of Stand Up To Cancer and felt compelled to take on the challenge after his father was recently given the all-clear from prostate cancer.
Fringe production supporting Help For Heroes
An award-winning Fringe play is working to raise awareness and funds for the veterans’ charity Help For Heroes.
Adapted from Kosovo and Iraq veteran Neil Blower Watkins’ acclaimed novel it follows the story of Tommy Atkins who suffers undiagnosed post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and faces multiple challenges adapting to civilian life.
Created in association with military and mental health charities, Shell Shock is a multiple-award production that is thought provoking, poignant and very funny. The play won the Sunday Mail Best Solo Show at Adelaide Fringe in March and has just been recommended as an Edinburgh Fringe “must-see” by the Daily Record.
As part of the [email protected] programme, in association with Summerhall, it is performed by former sitcom actor Tim Marriott in the Hepburn House drill hall which has been temporarily transformed into a Fringe venue.
Ailsa Alcock, Help For Heroes’ fundraising manager for Scotland,said: “We are delighted that awareness is being raised about the mental health challenges faced by forces veterans at the Edinburgh Fringe through soldier Tommy’s powerful story of coping with PTSD as told through Shell Shock.
“The company behind the production has also offered invaluable support for the work that Help For Heroes does - from actor Tim Marriott mentioning us in the play to allowing our volunteers to hold collections and hand out leaflets at the informal Q&A sessions held afterwards.
“Help For Heroes offers wounded, injured and sick forces veterans and service personnel the chance to reach their potential, regain their purpose and have a positive impact on society.
“We hope people will go along to see Shell Shock and learn more about the issues that affect so many of our armed forces and their
families and the support that Help For Heroes can offer them.”
Quarriers to offer classes with a bit of Oomph!
Quarriers’ Glasgow Group Activities Service, which supports adults with learning disabilities, has partnered with Oomph! a UK-wide initiative to get people active and socialising.
Following special training, staff at the service have been accredited by Oomph! making them one of very few community-led organisations in Scotland to offer these specialist classes.
The Glasgow Group Activities Service, run by leading social care charity Quarriers, is based in community centres in the north west and Southside of the city as well as in East Dunbartonshire and offers adults with learning disabilities a range of activities including music, drama and art.
Eilidh Swatton, group activities development worker at Quarriers, said: “We are thrilled to be accredited by Oomph! and to be in a position to roll out these brilliant classes across our Glasgow Group Activities Service.”
Military charities call on the country to say "Thank You" for WW1 sacrifice
Poppyscotland and Legion Scotland today launched a mass movement to say “thank you” to all who served, sacrificed and changed our world during the First World War. With fewer than 100 days to go until 11thNovember, the charities are calling on mass involvement from the public to mark the centenary of the end of World War One.
To launch the Thank You movement, a giant installation of eight-foot-high illustrated letters appeared in Dundee’s City Square. The public were invited to write their own personal messages of thanks directly on to the installation.
Dundee was chosen for the Scottish launch of Thank You as the city exemplified the collective effort made across Scotland, Britain and the Commonwealth, not only on the front line, but, importantly, on the home front as well.