Ge­orge, 70, heads for the hills in char­ity cam­paign

The Oban Times - - News - SANDY NEIL sneil@oban­

A 70-YEAR- OLD carer is plan­ning a night hike up Ben Ne­vis next month to raise funds for the Mul­ti­ple Scle­ro­sis (MS) So­ci­ety.

Ge­orge Hous­ton will be tak­ing on the chal­lenge overnight from Au­gust 26 to 27 to raise funds for the char­ity that sup­ports him and his part­ner Bar­bara who has MS.

Ge­orge is aim­ing to raise at least £1,200 for re­search into the con­di­tion and sup­port for peo­ple af­fected by MS.

Bar­bara’s daugh­ter also has MS, as do three mem­bers of Ge­orge’s ex­tended fam­ily, in­clud­ing a 15-year- old girl, who has re­cently had the di­ag­no­sis con­firmed.

Bar­bara and Ge­orge have lived to­gether for 18 years, dur­ing which her MS has pro­gressed.

Ge­orge, who re­cently turned 70, said: ‘Train­ing for the chal­lenge is go­ing well so far.

‘I have climbed Ben Lora three times in suc­ces­sion in day­light, which is a greater dis­tance and al­most the same amount of climb­ing as Ben Ne­vis. It will be more of a chal­lenge at night with a head torch.

‘I am most grate­ful for all the dona­tions that have been gen­er­ously re­ceived from rel­a­tives, friends and res­i­dents of Seil, Oban, the USA and oth­ers.’

Speak­ing about his part­ner, he added: ‘Bar­bara was an ac­tive, talk­a­tive per­son and we did much to­gether, in­clud­ing be­ing in­volved with the lo­cal Rid­ing for the Dis­abled Car­riage Driv­ing Group from its start.

‘Af­ter get­ting pneu­mo­nia in 2009, Bar­bara is now con­fined to a wheelchair or bed and has to com­mu­ni­cate let­ter by let­ter us­ing eye blinks.

‘All the money raised from the Ben Ne­vis night hike will be go­ing to the MS So­ci­ety – the lead­ing UK char­ity for peo­ple with MS.’

There are more than 11,000 peo­ple liv­ing with MS in Scot- land and more than 100,000 peo­ple liv­ing with MS in the UK. MS is an un­pre­dictable con­di­tion that strikes with­out warn­ing – one day you can be fine, the next you might lose your sight or be un­able to move. Peo­ple typ­i­cally start ex­pe­ri­enc­ing symp­toms in their 20s or 30s. These can in­clude sight loss, pain, fa­tigue, in­con­ti­nence and dis­abil­ity.

You can spon­sor Ge­orge’s ef­fort at www.justgiv­ Ge­orge-Hous­ton. You can find out more in­for­ma­tion about MS or the MS So­ci­ety on its web­site, and there is also a free helpline on 08088 008000.

Ge­orge Hous­ton train­ing for his night hike.

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