This year’s charity Kiltwalk has set itself the goal of raising two million pounds. The annual event is taking place in Glasgow, Dundee, Edinburgh, Speyside and Aberdeen and is working alongside a wide range of local and national children’s charities.
The Edinburgh event will take place on the 11th of May and the 26-mile walk kicks off from Murrayfield at 9am. With last year’s seeing an impressive 1,350 people taking part, this year they are hoping to more than double that figure, with the number of walkers being capped at 3,000. Mhairi Pearson, the Head of Marketing and Fundraising at the Kiltwalk, is confident that they can reach their targets:
“Last year we raised over 1 million pounds and we are going for 2 million this year, which I am confident we will get.”
Those taking part in the event, and the charity themselves, cite the simplicity of it as being a key part behind its success. It works essentially as it says on the tin, you walk while wearing a kilt. It also lacks any competitive edge insuring a relaxed atmosphere for those involved. If the full 26 miles sounds a bit too much however, there is also a half walk, which comes in at 13 miles, and an even shorter ‘Wee Walk’, which covers only six, making sure that the whole family can have a go.
Lloyd Mawson, who is walking in the event to raise money for a friend’s sister who suffers from Cystic Fibrosis, believes that the casual nature of the event is one of the main reasons that it has proven successful:
“It is something that is very inclusive, you don’t have to be an athlete or take a great deal of time to do this kind of stuff, so if more charity events were along these lines we could raise an awful lot of money.”
With the event-taking place in order to raise money for children’s charities, each year is seeing more and more people get involved. National groups like Cash for Kids are key partners of the organisation, but there is also a strong focus on insuring more local organisations are involved. For example, Edinburgh’s own The Sick Kids Friends Foundation, a charity that supports the work of the Royal Hospital for sick children in Edinburgh, is one of the main charity partner’s for the Edinburgh event. They will receive a share of all sponsorship raised from the Edinburgh Kiltwalk, but are also inserting their own team into the event, from whom they will receive 50% of all sponsorship raised.
If you are interested in taking part in the Kiltwalk or in volunteering to help with the organisation, all the details can be found on their website, www.thekiltwalk.co.uk.