ROTARY HELPS A CLIMBER

Submitted to C & B News May 2018

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The Rotary Club cannot offer financial support in response to every application we receive but occasionally there is one which stands out and this was the case in respect of an application which came directly from Louise Flockhart.
Louise is 14 years old and a pupil at Balerno High School. She wrote to ask if the Rotary Club might help her meet expenses incurred as a member of the Scottish Youth Climbing Team and now also of the GB Youth Climbing Squad.
She began sport climbing 5 years ago at the Edinburgh International Climbing Arena at Ratho and says when she is not at school she spends all her time climbing. In 2017 she gained a place on the Scottish Youth Climbing Team and went on to win category titles as Scottish Bouldering Champion, Scottish Open Lead Climbing Champion and British Lead Champion.
Still in 2017 Louise was selected for the 2018 GB Youth Climbing Development Squad and was then selected to represent Great Britain at four 2018 European Youth Cup events in Austria, Switzerland, Germany and Bulgaria. Her ultimate goal is to compete in the 2024 Paris Olympics and in Los Angeles in 2028.
These four European Cup events are in addition to British competitions and there is no central funding to help with travel costs. Louise estimates that the European events alone will cost a total of around £3000.
Louise writes: “My parents have been great in supporting me with my training and travel to competitions around Great Britain……I would really like to personally help towards paying for my Europeans and that is why I decided to write to you to ask whether Currie Balerno Rotary Club would be kind enough to give a grant or donation to help me.”

Club President Graham Low says: “We are so impressed by what Louise has achieved at such a young age and we are delighted to make a donation of £250. We look forward to Louise coming later this year to tell the Club about her experiences”