30 players, five coaches, 2000km and 28 days… that’s the challenge the University of Stirling Clansmen decided to take up this month, in order to support Start Up Stirling.
Members of the American football team decided to challenge themselves in their own month‑long Clansman Challenge, to give back to the Stirling community.
Hamish Gornall, the Clansmen team president said: “We obviously haven’t been allowed to play this year, so going into the second semester we haven’t done much as a team, hence we decided to do something else. To change our goals, we decided to run 2000km as a team throughout February.”
“We are based at the University and play here, and we are very lucky to be in the position we are in, so we are able to give back to people who are not so fortunate.”
Hamish said they choose Start Up Stirling as “the lockdown had so much impact on families in local areas especially. We thought instead of giving the money to huge charities that work globally, we would try to donate it somewhere locally. [This way, it will] have a lot more impact and we can see what they’re doing with the money we have raised.”
Start Up Stirling is a local charity, which relieves poverty, suffering and distress of people in crises across Stirlingshire. On top of running a local foodbank and offering helper packs for people overcoming homelessness, Start Up Stirling also offers tailored help with mental health, financial difficulties or social isolation.
An online statement from the charity read: “Thank you to the whole team for taking on this epic challenge, during what is already a challenging time for us all, to support those facing hardship across the Stirling area!”
Hamish says the situation for the Clansmen team itself has been “pretty terrible” this year. Since contact sports are only allowed to train in Tier 2, the team only managed to train for one week in the first semester. Hamish says that “the chances we are going to play this year are looking slim as well”.
Hence for Clansmen, this challenge also offers a chance to look after their teammates.
Hamish explained: “It’s very limiting of what we can do at the minute, and we wanted to get people out of the house, and give them a motive to run, instead of running for the sake of running.”
“Get out, keep yourself fit and healthy and also [at the same time] raise money for a charity.”
Withing the first week of their challenge, Stirling Clansmen were already able to raise £140 out of their £500 target.
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Featured Image: University of Stirling Clansmen