FSF in the press

Roisin walks 96 miles for FSF

Determined shop worker Roisin Lowrie used the power of SONG to complete a gruelling charity walk along the West Highland Way.

Roisin, 22, tackled Scotland’s famous long-distance route – linking Milngavie and Fort William – to raise cash for the Fresh Start Foundation, which supports vulnerable children in Gambia, West Africa.

The Linwood woman was joined in the 96-mile challenge by her colleague Laura Sparkes, 19, and four other walkers.

And they were delighted to reach the finish line knowing that they had raised more than £1,000. The walkers, who work at the Lush store at Braehead in Renfrew, admit they didn’t exactly go full throttle on a training programme before they set off – but belting out some tunes kept them going along the way.

Roisin said: “We hadn’t really done any training for the walk and it was really hard work. I had to push my body to the limit but, at the same time, it was a lot of fun.

“We told people we met on the walk about the charity and they donated money there and then.

“We camped out in tents during the seven days we were walking. We decided that, if we had enough money for hotels, then it should be donated to the charity.

“It was tough going sometimes but we kept our spirits up by singing as we walked along.”

Roisin and Laura enjoyed some stunning scenery as they completed the route, which follows the shores of Loch Lomond, passes Ben Lomond and goes through Glen Falloch before crossing Rannoch Moor and finally entering Lairigmor and Glen Nevis.

The terrain ranges from lowland moors, dense woodland and rolling hills to mountainous regions in the Scottish Highlands.

Lush is a partner of the Fresh Start Foundation and continually raises money for the charity. Both Roisin and Laura visited Gambia earlier this year to help renovate a school in the village of Kwinella, as well as repairing fencing, planting trees and teaching youngsters English.

Roisin added: “We were determined to do the walk for the kids in Gambia and, when things got a bit tough, I looked at photographs of the youngsters in Kwinella I had with me. Those gave me the motivation to keep going.”

Other members of the fundraising West Highland Way walking group were Rebecca Riddick, who works at Braehead’s Wallis store; Martin Connaghan, who works at the shopping centre’s Primark branch; and friends Danta Adams and Aiden McClure.

Braehead’s assistant marketing manager, Joanne Quinn, said: “Roisin and Laura did a great job, not only walking the West Highland Way but organising the trip as well.

“They are very committed to helping the children in Gambia and I know they’re planning even more fundraising events.”

The Fresh Start Foundation was established in 2006 by Lamin and Rebecca Daffeh to support orphans and other vulnerable children in Gambia. Help is provided to poverty-stricken children between the ages of seven and 18 who are vulnerable to abuse and exploitation.

The charity’s main focus is to provide access to education and health care, as well as clean water and sanitation. To find out more, go online at www.fsfgambia.org

Taken from the Paisley Daily Express. To view the original article click here.