Readers' letters

Find out what our readers think of the stories making the Gazette headlines.


Dear Ed, — Oxfam Scotland is calling on Gazette readers to help the people of Haiti by offering some free time to volunteer in their local Oxfam shop.

Shop volunteers play a vital role in Oxfam's work because all the money raised by the sale of goods in the shops is used to fund the work the organisation does in countries around the world, like Haiti, where people need our support.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

As one of the aid agencies on the ground in Haiti, Oxfam has been providing emergency relief to the people affected by the earthquake in the form of clean water, sanitation and shelter.

The shops and volunteers have played a vital role in enabling the organisation to do this by collecting money for the Disasters Emergency Committee Haiti Earthquake Appeal, which has now raised over 4 million in Scotland.

Jo Christison, Area Manager for the East of Scotland said: "You don't need to be a logistician or an engineer to help the people of Haiti. There is plenty to do in Lanark.

"We sell everything from books and music to vintage clothes and bric-a-brac, so if you're a book lover, a music lover or a dedicated follower of fashion, you can lend Haiti a helping hand without even leaving Clydesdale."

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

You don't need experience to become a volunteer. All you need is bags of enthusiasm, a willingness to learn and muck in and the desire to make a difference.

Volunteering is a great way to learn new skills, meet new people and make new friends, so out of the simple wish to help other people you'll get something back for free as well. — Yours etc,


Oxfam Scotland Campaigns Manager.


Dear Ed, — We are calling on Gazette readers to nominate their favourite Lottery-funded projects for The National Lottery Awards 2010.

The Awards are the annual search to find the UK's favourite Lottery-funded projects and recognise the dedication of the people behind them.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Every week Lottery players raise 25 million for projects all across the UK, making a difference to people, places and communities.

We want to hear from your readers about any Lottery-funded projects that have had a positive impact on the local area, made a real difference to people's lives or anyone who is personally involved in transforming their community with the help of Lottery funding.

The Awards have seven categories, each reflecting the main areas of Lottery funding: arts; sport; heritage; health; environment, education, voluntary and charity projects.

The projects that make it to the finals of The National Lottery Awards will appear on a star-studded prime-time BBC1 TV show later this year. They will also have a chance to win a 2,000 cash prize.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

So if you want to see a local winner, visit to find out more. Entries must be received by 5pm on Friday, February 12. — Yours etc.,


The National Lottery Awards,

1 Atlantic Quay,



Dear Ed, — In these tough economic times, local businesses and farmers need our support.

Locally sourced produce is no longer a fashionable phrase; it now relates to the very survival of local shops and businesses.

In addition, the people of Scotland recognise the quality of home-grown produce and want to buy food that is genuinely Scottish.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

For too long consumers have been duped by products that have been mislabelled or not labelled at all.

For example Scottish Smoked Salmon and Smoked Scottish Salmon can mean entirely different things, with the former being foreign salmon smoked in Scotland and the latter being Scottish salmon potentially smoked and packaged abroad.

Consumers are in the dark about which country is really responsible for our produce.

This is misleading and unacceptable. It is about time that producers are given clear guidelines for labelling and I will continue to campaign to have existing legislation changed to reflect the choice and clarity that consumers expect.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

I want people to know that if it says produced in Scotland on the label, the central ingredient is at least of Scottish origin.

I would ask my constituents to join in the campaign and help protect Scotland's local farmers and businesses. — Yours etc.,


Scottish Conservative MEP,

The European Parliament,

Rue Wiertz,

B-1047, Brussels.


Dear Ed, — I am appealing on behalf of the Meningitis Trust for readers to come forward with their experiences of meningitis to mark National Storytelling Week, starting February 1.

The Meningitis Trust works to raise life-saving awareness of meningitis, its symptoms and its after-effects in the UK.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

But, in order to reach more people, we need those affected by meningitis to come forward and share their experiences.

We are also the only charity in the UK to offer a range of free professional services and community based support for people affected by meningitis.

The thought of people who have been affected by the disease suffering in silence is the motivation of the Trust.

To ensure that everybody knows that the Trust is here to support ANYONE affected by the disease, our supporters help others by sharing their story.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

I am asking for anybody who feels that they would like to help the Trust in raising vital awareness of the disease and the Trust's existence to get in touch.

The Meningitis Trust helps around 20,000 people each year through its unique range of services and community support.

There will always be meningitis and the Meningitis Trust's expert team will be supporting survivors and their loved ones long after vaccines are introduced.

If you would like more information on sharing your story please feel free to contact me on [email protected] or by calling 01453 768000. — Yours etc.,


Communications Executive,

Meningitis Trust.

Related topics: