Young people celebrate fundraising milestone

A group of young people from West Lothian turned up to say a big thank you to housebuilder Walker Group for donating an incredible £100,000 to Children 1st over the last 20 years.

The young people from Bathgate’s Chill Out Zone (COZ) visited the family-owned housebuilder’s Monarch’s Way development in West Calder to express their gratitude on reaching the landmark figure.

Walker Group has been involved with Scotland’s National Children’s Charity since 1997, helping to fund projects like COZ, a drop in centre for young people with an emphasis on healthy living.

The centre offers help with a range of areas including mental health, physical health and sexual wellbeing. Young people can relax in the centre’s cyber café and social space and take advantage of confidential medical and counselling areas.

Sandy Casey, Director Walker Group said: “Walker Group’s directors have always been passionate about supporting the communities in which the group builds and we hugely admire the work Children 1st has been doing to transform the lives of vulnerable children and young people.

“We donate a percentage of each house sale to charity and Children 1st is one of  a number of Scottish charities we are privileged to be able to support. We could not have donated the money without our homebuyers and our staff who have also organised a huge variety of fundraising activities over the years from jumping out of planes to bake sales and dress down days.

“It is fantastic to meet some of the young people who are benefitting from our support and hear about their lives and what a difference Children 1st has made to them.”

Children 1st Chief Executive Alison Todd said: “The long term support from Walker Group has helped us support thousands of children and young people and change their lives forever. We are grateful to partner with such a generous company and to benefit from the sale of homes that families love.”

One young person (wishes to remain anonymous) who has been supported by COZ for five years said: “When I came to COZ they made me feel safe. COZ has helped me build my confidence. I used to self harm because I hated my body. Through talking with staff I was able to get the support I needed. The group of friends I have I would not have without COZ. COZ has helped me to build my confidence to apply for college which I start in August.”
Children 1st was founded in 1884 and was for many years known as the RSSPCC (Royal Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children). It became Children 1st in 1995. The charity helps Scotland’s families to put children first, with practical advice and with support in difficult times. And when the worst happens it supports survivors of abuse, neglect and other traumatic events in childhood to recover.

Walker Group is a family-owned housebuilder with more than 40 years experience in building quality homes. It has developments across Central Scotland including Glen Ora in North Berwick, The Braes in Falkirk and the newly launched Long Meadow in Ormiston.