Cruden Bay teenager Ewan Mackay (17) had a novel idea to raise funds for his favourite charity The Friends of the Special Nursery.
Ewan was born 3 and a half months premature at Aberdeen’s Neo Natal Unit and was diagnosed with cerebral palsy as a baby.
Having recently undergone an operation which had his leg in plaster for seven weeks, Ewan thought he might raise some money by getting friends and family to sign his stookie for £1, by the time the cast was removed last Tuesday he had raised £200 for the Special Nursery.
Ewan’s recent operation was to improve movement in his left leg and followed major surgery in his right leg last year which saw him miss a term at school as he recovered at home. In spite of this Ewan has had a pretty amazing year by any standard.
Now in 6th year he managed to achieve all of the grades he was hoping for in his 5th year exams and is working towards the additional qualifications he hopes will help him secure a place at college where he hopes to further his studies in music.
A keen musician, Ewan plays cello and guitar and has used his talent to raise money for charity and also to entertain residents in a number of care homes in the area as part of his Silver Duke of Edinburgh Award.
In September he also completed his Duke of Edinburgh expedition which extended over three days in pretty grim conditions.
Undaunted the team set off only to discover that the electric bike Ewan was to use for the expedition was broken and the power assist which was thought to be so vital did not work.
In spite of this the team set off and by a combination of pedal power on Ewan’s part and the support of his team members to help him along when the going got tough they succeeded in their challenge and all arrived home safely.
Ewan could not praise his team-mates highly enough: “In spite of the heavy rucksacks they were carrying and the very difficult conditions we were faced with, everyone was brilliant and we really pulled together and kept each other going.”
He went on to say: “It’s been a tough year in many ways but I’ll look back at 2012 with many happy memories,” which included passing his driving test just a few weeks after his 17th birthday – something he was desperate for as it will make such a difference to his independence.
“Cerebral palsy presents many challenges, I’d be lying if I said it didn’t, but maintaining a positive attitude helps get me out of bed in the morning and on with life, which is proving to be very rewarding at the moment so I don’t really have much to complain about,” he added/
Ewan has also set up his own business this year called Capture it 4 U which provides a media capture service covering a range of specialities. The most widely used so far has been transferring VHS video tapes, normally all these old family videos which haven’t been seen for ages, onto DVD.
In addition to this he has recently invested in new equipment and can also transfer cine film, slides, vinyl records and audio cassette tapes all into the digital formats compatible with all of the modern media players, he’s also got his own website called www.captureit4u.co.uk.
Ewan is pictured just before his cast was removed, and before getting back behind the wheel of his car and heading home to Cruden Bay. He said he would just like to thank everyone for all of their support during the past year and in particular everyone who has given so generously to help him with his fund raising efforts.
And as for next year, well he’s busy planning a fund-raising hike to the top of Ben Nevis in June, watch this space for all the details nearer the time.