CHAS appeals for 10k runners

April 27, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

by Martin Graham

SCOTTISH hospice charity CHAS is looking for women to join its team for the Glasgow Women’s 10k on Sunday 13 May.

Last year’s team of 40 raised £8,500 and this time the fundraising target is £10,000. The charity is keen to hear from people who want to run this year for fun, a personal best or to try something new.

CHAS Fundraiser Grace Wilson said: “The amount raised last year was an amazing achievement and this year we want to top it by smashing the £10,000 mark.

“All the money raised will help provide care for children and young people in Scotland who have life-shortening conditions.”

Everyone in the team will receive a sponsor pack including a running vest. After the race they will receive free chocolate and have their photo taken at the CHAS stall in the Charity Village.

Children’s Hospice Association Scotland (CHAS) is a charity that provides the only hospice services in Scotland for children and young people with life-shortening conditions. The hospice are Rachel House in Kinross and Robin House in Balloch.

There the whole family can find short planned breaks, emergency support, end of life care and a range of bereavement services.

CHAS also provides a home care service staffed from both hospices and with dedicated teams in the North of Scotland. Currently more than 250 families use the charity’s resources. Funding comes from, mainly, the generosity of CHAS supporters who help raise the £7+ million needed each year to provide the vital hospice services.

Visit CHAS at


Rally highlights destitute asylum seekers’ plight

April 27, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

by Martin Graham

Noreen Real addresses the rain soaked crowd.

ONE HUNDRED and fifty people braved the cold and hail on Saturday morning to attend a rally at the UKBA building at Brand Street, Govan, to protest at plans to evict up to 200 asylum seekers from their homes.

Charity Ypeople, formerly YMCA, are set to evict up to 140 people seeking sanctuary after losing a government contract to Serco.

Serco is an international service company which also operates tagging schemes for offenders, runs prisons and has business at Guantanamo Bay.

Ypeople had been allowing refugees whose asylum claims had been refused, to remain in their homes. But under the new contract they may be forced to evict these tenants. Ypeople said that the profit on this contract for the UK Borders Authority (UKBA) was used to enable people to say on over the contracted time.

Speakers at the rally  included Kingsway campaigner and former Scotswoman of the year Noreen Real.

Noreen said: “I will fight with the last breath in my body to stop our government treating people like animals. We’re not dealing with animals, we’re dealing with human beings. Stop starving them out, stop putting them out on the street.”

Susan Quinn of the EIS shared her views.

EIS president elect Susan Quinn said: “We are being asked in schools to develop curriculums where we promote citizenship and understanding, where we promote empathy, yet what are our leaders doing? Our leaders are doing the exact opposite of what we teach our young people.”

Phil Jones from Unity support centre said: “There are proposals to house refugees in board-only accommodation. They could be housed in hostels with only food and no money.”

A temporary night shelter in the city is already attracting an average of ten people a night.  There are also known to be a large number of rejected asylum seekers in Glasgow who have a roof over the head only because friends let them sleep on their sofa.

Help to get moving again

April 27, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

by Martin Graham

BIKE charity Freewheel North are holding organised bike rides throughout the spring and summer months.

Cyclists of all ages and abilities are welcome to attend the sessions taking place on Mondays and Thursdays from 11am to 1pm. Rides are planned and led by qualified instructors, and will help to boost cycling skills and bike confidence.

The rides are ideal for beginners, seasoned cycling veterans and those who haven’t been on a bike for years. Freewheel can even provide bikes and helmets to those without their own two wheeled transport.

If you do bring your own bike, they can carry out some basic maintenance to get you moving.

The rides offer a sociable and enjoyable way to boost cycling confidence and improve wellbeing. They start at the Glasgow Green Cycling Centre, which is near the Templeton Business Centre.

To book a place, contact Freewheel North’s cycling development officer Michelle Letowska on 07951 969394.

River becomes an artist’s ikon

April 27, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

By Martin Graham

The artist fetches the water from the Clyde

THE GLASGOW International festival of visual art has thrown up some unusual treats.
From Jeremy Deller’s ‘Sacrilege’ (the bouncy Stonehenge at Glasgow Green) to the “tiramisu” inside GOMA, playful and unusual work has provided unexpected delights for art lovers.
One of the more unusual “happenings” took place beside the Clyde, and even brought the river into the work.
“Keening Luna” by Glasgow artist Douglas Morland took place at high tide beside the Victoria Bridge opposite the sheriff court.
A group of female singers, all dressed in black, performed a tone poem, their voices rising and falling, creating an eery atmosphere.
Morland himself began conducting the choir, but soon clambered out on to a platform to draw water directly from the river.
He repeatedly threw down buckets on ropes to gather water from the Clyde. The river water was then poured into a large fishbowl. The water will be kept for a future performance. And then the singing was done and the performance was over.

Douglas explained that the work was inspired by the moon. He said: “As a child at night, I often wondered what would happen if the moon were to simply just disappear. One thing I did know was that it would affect the tides in some way or other.”

The Glasgow International festival continues until May 7.


The choir sings to the moon.