Youngsters give charity a boost

Russell and Yvonne accept cash from Jade and Zoe.
Russell and Yvonne accept cash from Jade and Zoe.

SOUTHSIDE school kids gave a local charity a boost when they decided to pledge their funds to East Renfrewshire Good Causes.

Newton Mearns man Russell Macmillan, who founded the charity after a life-saving double organ transplant, received £3,000 at a Youth and Philanthropy Initiative (YPI) evening at Craigholme School.

All of the school’s S3 pupils took part in the eight-week scheme, with six local charities represented at the final presentation evening on Wednesday.

Zoe Balfour and Jade Stern’s personal and professional presentation on East Renfrewshire Good Causes made the judges choose the East Ren charity over many other worthwhile causes, such as the Scottish Kidney Federation, Sri Lankan Children’s Shelter and Sexual Assault Victims Initiative.

Russell Macmillan and his wife Yvonne were in the audience and were moved by the girls’ work.

Russell told The Extra: “They were so enthusiastic and professional, even when they visited us to carry out their research, we were impressed with how motivated Jade and Zoe were.

“The work they have carried out is excellent, and we are delighted to put this £3,000 towards helping more good causes in the local area”.

Zoe and Jade were also overjoyed that their chosen charity was successful.

“We chose this charity for very personal reasons”, said Zoe, “and we are so happy that ER Good Causes will benefit from us taking part in the YPI scheme”.

This is the first year that Craigholme School has participated in the YPI scheme, and it is one of only 60 schools which currently run the programme. The school will continue to run the scheme next year.

Meanwhile, nearby Hutchesons’ Grammar school also took part in the youth philanthropy initiative for the first time this year.

After much deliberation, secondary three pupils at the school decided to donate £3,000 to The Wood Family Trust — a Scottish charity to invest £50 million into economic, community and enterprise activities in sub-Saharan Africa and the UK.

Head of S3 at the school, Pete Russell, said: “That money will make a real difference to a small, worthwhile charity”.