One of Scotland’s leading housing and care providers is embarking on a new adventure this spring in order to raise money for a fantastic cause.
Edinburgh based charity, Blackwood, will participate in The Caledonian Challenge between the 13th and 14th of June aiming to raise as much money as possible for Foundation Scotland – an independent charity established to strengthen local communities by providing a source of funding to community led projects.
The event will see a brave group of nine Blackwood employees dubbed the “Blackwood Bauchles” cover a total of 54 miles along the West Highland Way – within just 24 hours.
The route starts at Milngavie and passes through Mugdock Country Park, follows the shores of Loch Lomond and eventually leads to the Devil’s Staircase where it then descends to Loch Leven and finishes at Gordon Square in Fort William.
Among the nine members involved in the challenge are Blackwood’s HR team consisting of Helen MacDonald, Alastair Forrest, and Christopher Hogsden and also Lesley Carnegie from Blackwood’s Business Services team.
Helen MacDonald, Head of HR and Organisational Development at Blackwood, has previously had the opportunity to take part in the challenge and went on to explain why it is such a great experience.
She said: “The [Caledonian] Challenge is an incredible experience, and a great way to raise money for charity.
“It also helps build team relationships across the organisation, and everyone will be joining forces to support us (or laugh at us!)
“On the day of the challenge it will be great to meet other teams from very different sectors – which will also be a great way to spread the news about Blackwood, and Bespoken (Blackwood’s unique social networking site and online community shaped by people who have disabilities or other support needs as a forum for sharing).
“Getting out and walking is fantastic for your health and makes you feel fantastic, and the camaraderie is really good for building relationships across the business and gaining a better understanding about the different departments.
“Most importantly we’re thrilled to be raising money for an extremely worthy cause.”
The team building aspect of the challenge has also been shared by fellow HR Officer Christopher Hogsden who said: “Hopefully it will bring people who don’t necessarily have day to day contact work wise together – plus we are raising money for a really worthwhile cause.”
Members of both teams have already started training in order to get fit before the start of the big adventure.
Leslie Carnegie, Business Improvement Manager at Blackwood, already described the tough physical process stating: “It’s a good group that are involved, and we all have similar senses of humour which is great!
“However the training has been very tough in parts. The 54 miles is really daunting, so I’m trying not to think about that too much and just focus on what we’re achieving.”
Fanchea Kelly, Chief Executive at Blackwood, leant her support to the group, saying: “We wish them all the best of luck and think it’s a fantastic way to raise money for such a good cause.
“Blackwood’s ethos is always to strive to achieve excellence so this challenge fits entirely with our company ethics.