Charity match and marathon help to provide second bus

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The Craig Gowans Memorial Fund has donated almost £6500 to the Sick Kids Friends Foundation which will see a second medically equipped minibus vehicle on the road in a matter of weeks.

An excellent turnout in June for the annual Craig Gowans Memorial Trophy, when a Hearts-Hibs select defeated Hutchison Vale 2-0, coupled with a momentous effort in this year’s Edinburgh marathon by close friends Gemma Maxwell, William McKenzie and Alex Liston, contributed to the £6421 raised over the two events.

The Craig Gowans Trust has proved hugely beneficial to a number of charities since its inception in 2007, two years after the tragic death of talented teenager Craig, who lost his life only a few weeks into his professional contract with Falkirk FC.

This will be the second minibus purchased on behalf of Craig’s fund and father John is overwhelmed by the contributions made on behalf of so many different sources.

He said: “We always have a good day and this year’s match was no different. We are absolutely delighted to raise this amount and the cause it is 
going to is remarkable.

“It’s a fitting tribute to Craig and it’s always a pleasure to be handing over cheques that will be put to great use. It has a real feelgood factor and long may it last.

“The second bus will be ready in eight weeks,so we are looking forward to that. They are basically ambulances as the equipment they have inside is just unbelievable. It lets the people who donate see exactly where there money has gone and also highlights Craig’s charity in the process, which means so much to us.

“We are already looking at ways to make the events bigger next year, so we’ve a few ideas of what we want to do.”

Maureen Harrison, chief executive of the Sick Kids Friends Foundation, cannot express her gratitude enough and reinforces the importance of working in collaboration with trusts like the Craig Gowans Memorial Fund which can go a long way to improving the lives of so many youngsters.

The Sunndach centre based in Livingston, which is a unit part of NHS Lothian’s University Hospitals Division caring for children with complex disabilities, has benefited enormously since the money raised last year from Craig’s memorial fund enabled the purchase of a new state-of-the-art mini bus and this year, the city’s Calareidh unit can expect to receive similar rewards. Harrison said: “It is a great benefit for us and we’ve already been able to do so much. This year we plan to purchase the minibus for Calareidh, so it has been really important in helping us to make a difference to a lot of children.

“I think that being able to do these things helps to keep the memory of what a special person Craig was and that’s really important. John, Sheila and all the family are simply amazing and we are delighted to be able to work with them.

“It’s very important that 
the children who live at or 
attend Calareidh are able to get out and about for various outings. The transport they have is very good but it’s seven years old now, so having a new vehicle will make sure they are able to get out a lot more often.”