Going for charity gold

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A FORMER Extra reporter is running a long way from home for charity this month.

Kirstie Crawford is gearing up to tackle the Boston marathon on April 16, to raise funds for mental health charity Samaritans.

Originally from Simshill, Kirstie attended King’s Park secondary school and lived in Mount Florida and Cathcart, working as a reporter on the paper between 1995 and 1997.

Kirstie later moved across the Atlantic and settled in Boston, and first volunteered on the Samaritans helpline last year — dealing with people who are feeling lonely or suicidal — before becoming a member of staff in October.

The southsider is running in memory of her father, fellow marathon runner Ian Crawford, who passed away six years ago following a serious illness.

She told The Extra: “It’s an honour and a privilege to be part of the Samaritans 2012 marathon team.

“Preparing physically has taken a lot of effort, but the knowledge that I’m helping Samaritans save lives has kept me going.

“I’m very grateful to all my family and friends for supporting me, and I hope I can make Glasgow proud”.

Already, Kirstie has raised $7,000 (approximately £4,000) for the cause – specifically the Samaritans’ suicide prevention service – and she is also planning on helping the Glasgow branch of the charity by collecting money in her former local, The Old Smiddy in Cathcart.

To follow Kirstie’s marathon efforts, visit www.crowdrise.com/SamaritansMarathonTeam/fundraiser/kcbostonmarathon.