A Stamperland dad has persuaded a team of work colleagues, family and friends to raise funds for Glasgow Children’s Hospital by walking 40 miles – in just one day!
Fraser MacRae has organised his challenging fundraiser to thank the hospital for its outstanding and ongoing care and treatment of Arlo, his one-year-old son.
Arlo was born prematurely in March of last year, and due to a couple of complications he spent the first month of his life in the babies’ intensive care unit at the Glasgow Children’s Hospital.
He still visits the hospital regularly, in fact he was due to undergo a minor operation on this week, his third operation so far with possibly two further operations to follow before his second birthday.
Fraser said: “Because of all our experiences with the hospital we have decided to try to do something fairly big to try and raise some money for the Glasgow Children’s Hospital Charity.
“I work for a company called Macs Adventure, who organise self-guided walking and cycling holidays.
“We thought about entering a team from the office into the Kiltwalk but, as our own customers can walk 20+ miles a day on our trips, the 26 miles didn’t seem quite far enough. We needed a bigger challenge.
“It hasn’t made me particularly popular in the office, but I have managed to convince 55 staff, family and friends to take part in a one day walking event – we are calling the West Highland Wahey!
“As we are trying to make it open to all we have four different distances of 40, 26, 19 and 12 miles.
“Twenty four of my big hearted colleagues have signed up to walk with me along the full 40 miles in one day (there may have been a small amount of begging and harassing required!) After camping overnight at Beinglas Farm, we will walk the West Highland Way in reverse to Milngavie, with a further 30 staff members, friends and family joining us at the various distances along the way.”
The West Highland Wahey will take place on Saturday, August 3, and the fundraisers have set themselves a target of raising £5000, a figure that Neil Lapping, the owner of Macs Adventure has said he would kindly match. So that means a potential donation of a huge £10,000 for the children’s hospital.
Fraser and his wife Fiona are immensely grateful to the staff at the hospital for everything they have done for their son.
Fraser said: “Arlo is doing well and is a very happy and tough wee guy.
“However, we don’t know what kind of difficulties, big or small, he faces in the future. He is moderately deaf and we are still to find the reasons why.
“Today, at 16 months old, he sat up for the first time! We are over the moon! It might not seem like a big deal but a lot of work went in to getting us to this point. Sitting up is something most babies achieve between four and seven months old.
“Every time we visit the hospital, which is a lot, this walk means more and more to me. The problems we have faced are, on the grand scheme of things, fairly minor.
“Still there have been some moments where it has been a little terrifying thinking of potential difficulties which lie ahead and you can feel fairly helpless.
“If by taking on this challenge and raising money we can help another family, probably going through a worse situation than us, or by making another child’s visit to that incredible hospital just that little bit easier, then at least we can feel like we are doing something.”
You can support Fraser and his team by visiting their fundraising page