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Resident Turns Laps of Fidra House into Cash for CHASS Charity

Press release from Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland

STROKE SURVIVOR TURNS LAPS OF NURSING HOME INTO CASH FOR CHARITY

Residents from Fidra Nursing Home in North Berwick, led by stroke survivor Donald Skinner, are walking laps of the home’s garden to raise vital funds for the North Berwick Stroke Club and Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland.

Staff have joined the challenge by racking up kilometres on foot and the residents are now matching every kilometre completed with a lap of the home’s garden. The residents, who began their challenge in July, have clocked up a whopping 2,000 laps already. Donald has completed at least 1,000 laps. They have been keeping a tally chalked up on the side of the building to keep track.

Donald Skinner, 87 originally from Edinburgh, who organised the challenge, suffered a stroke in 2017.  He struggled with his mobility and speech as a result of his stroke and left his home in North Berwick to become at resident at Fidra House Nursing Home three years ago.

Donald’s hard work and determination has meant that he has made a good recovery from his stroke and he certainly hasn’t let it hold him back.  He is a keen walker and before lockdown Donald loved to amble around North Berwick to keep himself fit and active but due to Covid-19 and the restrictions that apply he found himself unable to leave the nursing home. Not one to be held back Donald started to enjoy walking around the leafy grounds of Fidra House on a daily basis. 

Donald, who attended the North Berwick Stroke Club which is affiliated to Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland, decided he wanted to put these extra steps to good use and help raise vital funds for the group and the charity. This is where Donald and the Activity Team at Fidra House came up with the idea of rallying fellow residents to do laps of the home’s garden and together match the staff’s kilometres to raise money.

Donald Skinner, stroke survivor, said,

“Before lockdown, I was attending the North Berwick Stroke Club on a weekly basis and I really enjoyed that. It is great to get together with people who understand how you are feeling and have had similar experiences following a stroke. I miss seeing them all very much as we are unable to meet right now. I hope that we can all get together again soon.

“I love walking around the beautiful grounds that we have here at Fidra House, and it has been particularly important over the last few months during lockdown. I had the idea of walking and recording my laps to raise money for charity and thought it was something we could all get involved with."

“We have all really been enjoying the challenge, it’s been a great motivator for everyone to get outside and stay active. I have walked at least 1,000 laps and my fellow resident Jane Rae has achieved over 800 laps. The staff have been busy clocking up kilometres - it’s a great team effort.”

Zandra Foster, Clare Overton and Liz Blows, staff at Fidra House, have been delighted to be part of this fundraising initiative.

Zandra Foster, Activities Coordinator at Fidra House, explains:

“It’s been such a wonderful thing for us all to concentrate on during lockdown. It’s really hard for the residents as they haven’t been able to leave the grounds or see their friends and families for such a long time so coming together to enjoy the walks has been such a lift for everyone. It has been great to be out and about, enjoying the garden, looking at the flowers and plants, listening to the birds and enjoying the lovely sunshine that we’ve had recently.  Everyone is really enjoying taking part and it’s had a really positive affect on us all."

“The residents have now managed to clock up more laps than we have kilometres, which is a fantastic achievement!"

“Donald has done a great job in initiating this fundraising event for Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland and he is delighted that they’ve chalked over 1,000 laps and counting!”

Shona Langlands, Community Fundraising & Events Manager at Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland, said:

“We are delighted that Donald, the residents and staff at Fidra Nursing Home are taking on this amazing challenge to raise vital funds to help stroke survivors in their community live their lives to the full."

“Donald is an inspiration and the embodiment of no life half lived. They are all doing such a fantastic job and with every step they’re helping more people across Scotland rebuild their lives. Everyone at Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland is cheering them on!”

If you’d like to get behind Donald, the residents and staff at Fidra Nursing Home, you can help them turn even more kilometres into cash by visiting their JustGiving page: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/fidrahouse

For enquiries, call us on 0131 523 0440 or contact us by email