FARMING CHARITY RSABI is urging people to sign up for a day of walking, running, cycling or kayaking to celebrate its first ever virtual Great Glen Challenge, taking place on Friday, August 27.

The event was first launched in 2012 as a feel-good fundraiser but has since become a competitive staple in the industry calendar, with more competitors joining up every year.

Since the event first began, over £300,000 has been raised by teams from across Scotland, helping RSABI provide much-needed emotional, practical and financial support.

Last year’s event was unfortunately cancelled due to the pandemic and with the ongoing uncertainty as restrictions continue to change, RSABI has decided not to hold the in-person GGC again this year, launching their first-ever virtual challenge

Everyone in the agricultural community and beyond is being asked to sign up and choose their own challenge – walking, cycling, running or kayaking a distance of their choice on Friday August 27, to raise funds for RSABI. Wheelchair users will also be able to log activity.

Interested participants can register for free from Friday, July 16, as an individual or can choose to create or join a team of up to five people and fundraise together. Everyone who raises over £75 will receive a limited edition virtual Great Glen Challenge polo shirt.

The event’s primary aims are to get as many people involved as possible, to highlight the positive effects of exercise, have some fun and raise some money at the same time.

Chief Executive of RSABI, Nina Clancy explains: “Traditionally the Great Glen Challenge sees teams walk, run, cycle or kayak a distance that’s not for the faint-hearted! This year we’re encouraging as many people as possible to get involved – whether you’re a short distance walker or an endurance cyclist. Exercise is a great way to boost your physical and mental wellbeing, why not challenge yourself on the day and raise a few pounds in the process?

“Your business could sign up some teams and enjoy a bit of competition to see who can raise the most funds or perhaps the best fancy dress? You could set aside an hour at lunchtime for a walk, or get the family involved with an after-school cycle. Whatever challenge you choose to take on we hope you have fun!”

RSABI Chair David Leggat echoed Nina’s sentiments: “We’d love to see everyone in the agricultural community do their bit and sign up for our virtual Great Glen Challenge. This is our first virtual event and we’re excited to see all the different challenges people choose to take on.”

There will be prizes for the most funds raised as a team and as an individual, best fancy dress, as well as other spot prizes for distance or unusual challenges. Participants will be encouraged to share photos from their Great Glen Challenge on social media using #GGC21.

RSABI’s Finance Manager, Harry Seran, added: “We hope the virtual nature of the event, and the fact that you can choose your own challenge encourages many people to take part, including those that have never considered entering our traditional Great Glen Challenge.

“Although this year’s event might not be as competitive a challenge as in previous years, it will allow a wider audience to do their bit for their own health and wellbeing as well as recognising the fantastic work of our supporters. We do plan to hold our in-person Great Glen Challenge again in 2022 and in fact we’ve already had two teams reserve their places.”

RSABI helped over 700 people and their families in the last financial year and saw demand for their helpline services increase by 63%. Funds raised by the GGC will help RSABI provide emotional, practical and financial support to people in the Scottish agricultural industry.

You can sign up to the virtual challenge from Friday, July 16, visit www.rsabi.org.uk for more information.