Published date : 13 May 2019
Mid Fife and Glenrothes MSP, Jenny Gilruth, today joined the local ‘Bums off Seats’ walking group on a trail around the Leven area as part of Active Fife’s May Walking Challenge.
The May Walking Challenge runs in conjunction with the ‘Bums off Seats’ walking group and this year the target is to walk the equivalent distance of the West Highland Way (96 miles). The aim of the challenge is to encourage the Fife population to start walking regularly in their local area – whether that be with family, alone, or part of a walking group.
Speaking after the walk, the Jenny Gilruth MSP commented:
“I really enjoyed the chance to take part in this month’s walking challenge, with the fantastic ‘Bums Off Seats’ walking group. 
We are lucky to live in area with so much natural beauty around us and the health benefits of walking, both physically and mentally are well-established. 
At the start of Mental health Awareness Week I would like to encourage people to get involved in their local walking group or to go for a walk by themselves or with family and friends. Again, I’d like to thank Elsie and all the team at ‘Bums Off Seats’ - I loved our walk through Letham Glen and I very much enjoyed my tea and scone at the Scoonie clubhouse afterwards!’
Bums off Seats work in partnership with NHS Fife, Fife Sports and Leisure Trust, and many other third sector groups. The community programme is run by a team of volunteers who are called ‘walk leaders’ and are trained to support people with long-run health conditions like dementia, or cancer. 
Vivienne McNiven, Co-ordinator of Active Fife, added:
“The Bums off Seats group were delighted to be joined by their local MSP Jenny Gilruth on today’s walk. The programme started with the aim of helping older people to become more active and over the years we have developed the programme to suit all ages and stages. 
Jenny was able to experience first hand the difference such walks makes to her constituents’ lives. May is walking month and across Fife we always participate in a walking challenge – this is a great way to get people on their feet and start walking. We look forward to Jenny returning for another visit over the summer months”
After the success of their community initiatives, Bums off Seats developed special programmes for people who needed more care – with all walk leaders undertaking various training from MacMillan Cancer Support and other organisations.
For more information about the Bums off Seat initiative, or for more on how to get involved, please visit the website: www.fifedirect.org.uk/bumsoffseats
Local Reporters, East Fife Mail, Courier (Fife), COMMUNITY
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