Local Linlithgow Constituency MSP, Fiona Hyslop, and Local MP for Linlithgow and East Falkirk, Martyn Day, have praised the invaluable role of volunteers during a visit to British Heart Foundation Scotland’s shop in Bathgate – seeing first-hand how their efforts help raise vital funds for the charity’s lifesaving research into heart and circulatory diseases.
The visit took place after Volunteers’ Week, marking the annual contribution of volunteers up and down the country. In Scotland, around 14,000 volunteers regularly give up their time to help the British Heart Foundation in its 75 Scottish shops.
During the visit, Fiona and Martyn heard more about the role of volunteers taking in donations from the local community and the incredible benefits of shopping preloved, preventing good quality items from going to landfill, creating a sustainable, circular economy and saving money, while also funding the British Heart Foundation’s lifesaving research.
In a year, the British Heart Foundation saves around 71,000 tonnes of goods going to waste and through the reuse and recycling of donated items, helps prevent 135,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions being released into the atmosphere. The charity will also sell over half a million pieces of living room furniture and 14,000 tonnes of preloved clothes from its stores.
Heart disease is a major cause of ill health in Scotland and the British Heart Foundation is currently funding around £60 million worth of projects in ten Scottish universities. This work is only made possible thanks to the huge generosity of the Scottish public.
“It was a pleasure to visit the British Heart Foundation shop and meet the dedicated staff and volunteers. Across Scotland, 75 British Heart Foundation shops provide invaluable funding for Heart research in Scotland, and the people of Bathgate are generous in their support of this cause.
“I know many of my constituents have seen and felt first-hand the terrible effects of heart disease. Shops like the Bathgate branch support the British Heart Foundation in funding around £60 million worth of research projects in Scottish universities.”
“The Bathgate Branch won Volunteer Team of the Year which is well deserved. I know they are always looking for more volunteers so if you want to be a part of an award-winning team volunteering at the George Street shop in Bathgate, please drop by and visit them.”
“The shop is always looking for more donations, and they have a fantastic range of quality goods available, so I would urge everyone to visit. Thank you British Heart Foundation for your fantastic work.”
Kym Kestell, British Heart Foundation Scotland’s Policy and Public Affairs Coordinator, said: “It was great to welcome Fiona to our Bathgate shop and talk about the crucial support of our fantastic volunteers here and right across Scotland. It goes without saying that volunteers are the lifeblood of our shops. Every hour donated makes a difference. It helps us raise money to power lifesaving science to save and improve more lives. Across Scotland around 700,000 people are living with heart and circulatory diseases. Your gift of time can help us, help them. For more than 60 years, your support has helped the British Heart Foundation turn research that once seemed like ‘science fiction’ into reality and we need your help now more than ever.”
Editor’s Notes: You can find out more about the work of the British Heart Foundation in Scotland at this link: https://www.bhf.org.uk/what-we-do/in-your-area/scotland