Thursday 20 September 2018
I was more than happy to host a reception in parliament for Medical Aid for Palestine to give representatives from the organisation the opportunity to provide MSPs and guests with information on their work and an update on the current situation.
Invited guests and MSPs heard from MAP Trustee Professor Graham Watt, MAP Director of Programmes Dr Andy Ferguson and Gerry O’Hare Oncology Clinical Nurse Specialist with NHS Great Glasgow and Clyde (all pictured above).
Since March, popular protests in Gaza have been attacked by Israeli military forces, causing mass casualties. At least 134 Palestinians have been killed – including two medics, 21 children and thousands injured. In response, MAP is providing essential medicines, surgical equipment and surgeons to support the struggling healthcare system – and speaking out.
Young people are being asked for their views on plans to deliver a new grant worth £300 a year to young carers.
The Young Carer Grant will be available to carers aged 16-17, not in receipt of Carers Allowance, who spend 16 hours or more a week caring for people entitled to qualifying disability benefits. 18 year old carers who are at still at school will also be eligible.
You can access more information at https://consult.gov.scot/social-security/consultation-on-young-carer-grant-regulations/
The Royal National Institute for the Blind Scotland (RNIB) were exhibiting in the Parliament this week and I took time to stop and have a chat with their representatives.
They have launched their campaign See Differently (#seedifferently) with the aim to promote Sim Specs, an economical and effective training aid for
anyone working with visually impaired people.
The Sim Specs gave members an opportunity to attempt various tasks, to give us a better understanding of the impact sight loss has
on a person’s life.
I’m pictured looking through the Sorenzo Studios designed window letting viewers see what the world can look like with diabetic retinopathy.
With the negotiations for the UK’s withdrawal entering a critical phase, the Scottish Parliament’s Culture, Tourism, Europe and External Affairs Committee has today launched a call for evidence, as part of the Committee’s on-going scrutiny of the Article 50 Negotiations, looking at what impact these negotiations are having on Scotland’s individuals, businesses and organisations.
The Chequers Plan, Canada plus, a ‘Blind Brexit’ and no deal are just some of the terms that have become part of the everyday language of Brexit. As the UK Government continues to negotiate the terms of the Article 50 withdrawal from the EU, the Committee wants to know what impact these negotiations, and the uncertainty created, has had on Scotland.
In the call for evidence on Article 50 preparedness, the Committee is asking what these negotiations have meant in practice and what further support or guidance is needed from the UK or Scottish Governments.
It was great to welcome a delegation from the constituency to the Parliament this week for a tour of the building and then into the public gallery to watch First Minister’s Question Time. I think everyone had an enjoyable time.
I’m always happy to make the necessary arrangements for constituents to visit the Parliament. If you would like to come along please contact Amanda on Amanda.firstname.lastname@example.org or 0131 348 5688 you can also make a request through the constituency office on 0141 339 7693.
Young people will have the opportunity to become Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths mentors as part of a new programme to help inspire their younger counterparts to study STEM.
A new Young STEM Leaders Programme, which will be run by the Scottish Schools Education Research Centre (SSERC) in partnership with science centres, the science festivals and youth organisations, will help young role models develop their mentoring skills and STEM knowledge.
Young mentors will receive training, as well as access to STEM experts for learning and support during their time as a mentor. The programme will also create accreditation routes for the young people involved, to recognise their development.
The development of the programme will begin next month, with an initial consultation and piloting phase before opportunities become available for young people to get involved later this academic year.
Every year in the UK, around 2,000 blood cancer patients need a stem cell transplant to save their life – but too often a donor isn’t available or can’t be found quickly enough so I was honoured to be invited to the Anthony Nolan Trust ‘Communities vs Blood Cancer’ event in Parliament this week to pick up not one certificate but three!
Glasgow Kelvin is being recognised for its amazing efforts in helping to save the lives of people with blood cancer which includes being the constituency in Scotland with the most registered stem cell donors as well as having added the most stem cell donors to the register in the last year, and also has the lowest average age (this is important as Anthony Nolan’s research shows that younger donors give patients the best chance of survival)
Their campaign ‘Communities vs Blood Cancer’ campaign, launching this week, aims to raise awareness of the need for more stem cell donors, particularly young men aged 16-30 and people from BAME backgrounds.
If you would like to find out more about the organisation and how you can help go to https://www.anthonynolan.org/
Wear It Pink
Breast Cancer Now’s Wear It Pink day is one of the biggest fundraising events of the year. Taking place on 19 October during Breast Cancer Awareness Month, thousands of people will wear it pink in their communities, schools or work places for Breast Cancer Now.
Since their first event in 2002, over £31.5 million has been raised for life-saving research that’s working to discover how to prevent breast cancer, how to detect it earlier and how to treat it effectively at every stage so we can stop the disease taking lives.
If you would like to take part you can find out more information from https://www.wearitpink.org/signup