The Collaborative Learning Circle | 60 gruelling miles raising money for OnSide
On April 8th 2019, 28 eager canoeists-will descend on Fort William for the start of a gruelling 3 day challenge in order to raise money for the charity, OnSide Youth Zones.
The challenge consists of kayaking the Great Glen canoe trail from west to east, from Fort William to Inverness. In total, that’s 60 miles of graft, teamwork and physical endurance.
The 28 participants all represent companies who make up the Collaborative Learning Circle (CLC) – a collaborative, idea sharing collective whose core objectives include increasing the numbers of young people coming into the highways and construction industries via Apprenticeships.
The Apprenticeships opportunities are aligned to the CLC’s social value partner OnSide Youth Zones.
OnSide’s Youth Zones are designed to give young people aged 8–19 years old (25 for those with a disability) somewhere to go, something to do and someone to talk to in their leisure time; occupying their bodies and minds with fun activities, learning new skills and socialising in a safe, positive way.
OnSide Youth Zones are there for young people in deprived areas, where the alternative for many is spending their evenings on the streets, or isolated at home.
Back on the water, the 28 rowers will be conquering formidable open lakes such as Loch Lochy and Loch Ness as they make their way from start to finish.
The daily grind will then be followed by a primitive series of evenings, with life’s luxuries absent as the team recuperate in overnight campsites after their exertions.
The Great Glen challenge was suggested by Kier’s Executive Director, Dave Wright as the perfect endeavour for CLC members to come together, work together, and yield further great results for charity.
This event will now follow in the footsteps of previous fundraisers by the CLC which include a Charity Ball held last April which raised the amazing sum of £502,660 in one night.
We spoke to Nigel Drew, MD of R&C Williams Ltd, based underneath Spaghetti Junction about the Caledonian challenge ahead to find out more about what was in store for the participants, their mindset, and what they hope to achieve.
Nigel told us:
“Everyone involved has been working hard to prepare for the trip as it’s certainly not going to be a steady row down the canal. We’ve had CLC members reporting of heading out on open lakes for some time now to train in conditions that best replicate what we will face in Scotland.
“Everyone seems in good spirits about what’s to come and there is a real sense of determination and purpose about what we’re doing. It’s just great that there are 12 companies from the same industry all pulling together to achieve.
“It’ll be fantastic for everyone involved and give a real sense of personal achievement when completed, which is then amplified by knowing we’re giving a huge boost to a very worthy cause.”
The CLC and its Partners will be fundraising at Traffex this week on Stand H060 and will be challenging anybody that would like to take part in seeing who fast they can row 500m.