Donald Grewar (54), affectionately known as ‘Mr G’ at school, was Calum’s guidance teacher while he studied at Madras College in St Andrews. Calum and his peers were left devastated, when the popular teacher was diagnosed with MND in February 2014.
Calum said, “Mr. Grewar helped me at school by taking interest in my academic life and my personal life outside school. He had an incredible work ethic and he believed in me. That’s how I was given such a great start to my time at Madras College. I have him to thank for where I am now, as he was my role model of how things should be done.
“I didn’t know he had Motor Neurone Disease until my last day at Madras College in June 2015. I noticed he wasn’t in his guidance base - he told me to go there if I wanted a conversation or if I needed help with something. I didn’t know what MND was, so the reaction was somewhat of an understandable shock to begin with.
“I moved to Dundonald that same year without seeing him on my last day of school. This made it even more difficult to come to terms with his diagnosis. I felt utterly helpless that I could do nothing to help him and a sense of loss that I was 2 hours away from him.”
At the beginning of his diagnosis Donald struggled to complete a sentence, due to a shortness in breath. As the condition has progressed, he has been moved onto an oxygen mask and now uses a wheelchair for extra mobility, after having difficulty walking.
Following Donald’s diagnosis, the school rallied around their teacher, hosting a number of fundraising events, from a pupil-organised Fun Run, to a school ‘Sportathon’ to support MND Scotland.
After hearing about Donald’s progression with the condition, Calum has decided to take on his own challenges to help raise awareness and funds for MND Scotland. As someone who enjoys challenging himself mentally and physically, Calum will take on two 10K races. He plans to complete both the Scottish 10K in September and the Edinburgh EMF 10K in May 2018.
“I’ve decided to fundraise for MND Scotland as I want to do my part in taking us a step closer to finding a cure and to keep MND Scotland’s essential services going.
“I wanted a challenge that would really put demand on me physically, as MND patients and their families are put under pressure every day.
“I’ve had support from my family and friends since I decided to raise money for MND Scotland. I feel that not enough people know about the cause, therefore I want to raise awareness and as much money as possible.
Iain McWhirter, MND Scotland’s Head of Fundraising and Volunteering said: “I’d like to thank Calum for sharing his story with us and for committing himself to raising awareness and funds for MND Scotland.
“Taking on exciting challenges like the EMF 10K and the Scottish 10K are a great way of raising the profile of Motor Neurone Disease and how the illness affects people’s lives. Calum’s story also shows us the strength and courage of people like Donald Grewar, who can continue going on helping other people in the face of such a devastating diagnosis.
“Calum has our full support and all of Team MND Scotland will be cheering him on for his first race in September.”
If you would like to support Calum in his fundraising efforts, you can sponsor him on his JustGiving page at: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/calum-scoular2
If you're interested in sharing your fundraising story, get in touch with us at Communications@mndscotland.org.uk
07 February 2020
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