Peterhead student to run marathon for autistic brother

Heather Ritchie is preparing to take part in the London Marathon for The National Autistic Society
Heather Ritchie is preparing to take part in the London Marathon for The National Autistic Society

A Peterhead student is preparing to run the London Marathon for The National Autistic Society (NAS).

Heather Ritchie (27), who is studying marine biology at the University of Aberdeen, has chosen to raise funds for the NAS as her brother, Alex 21, was diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome in 2000 shortly after turning five.

Alex is just one of over 700,000 people in the UK on the autism spectrum.

The NAS provides a wide variety of help and support for people touched by autism throughout their lifetimeand in the North East they have branches in Ellon and Garioch and a housing scheme in Tramaine House, Peterhead.

Heather said: “Taking part in the London Marathon for this amazing charity is a huge personal goal and my way of helping the 1 in 100 people on the autism spectrum in the UK.

“The National Autistic Society (NAS) is a charity close to my heart so when my training is at its most gruelling, during the dark, cold and snowy winter days, I am spurred on by the knowledge that my efforts are helping individuals with autism, which is a serious and lifelong condition.”

Kate Donohue, Head of Fundraising at the National Autistic Society, said: “It’s always humbling to see the determination and hard work that NAS supporters like Heather put into creating a better world for people with autism.

“Without people like her, we wouldn’t be able to continue our work supporting people on the autism spectrum and their families.

“We wish her all the best in the Marathon and will be cheering her on every step of the way.”

To support Heather in her efforts to raise money for autism, sponsor her now by visiting nas-london-marathon-2016.everydayhero.com/uk/heather.

You can also support Heather by attending some organised events.

A charity quiz and raffle is being held in Peterhead on Friday, April 1, at the Palace Hotel.

Tickets to this event are priced at £2.50 and those purchased in advance will be entered into a prize draw.