We are honoured to be one of the three causes chosen by Racing Awareness Scotland (RAS), who use personal experiences and their love of motorsport to drive awareness of our work, thrusting mental health issues, particularly carers’ support, into pole position.
In a serendipitous twist, Sir Jackie Stewart’s Race Against Dementia, Alzheimer Scotland and Support in Mind Scotland make up the trio of charities – aligning neatly to the initials RAS. The three organisations were hand-picked by the team’s founders Alex Milne and Fiona Fahey, who are motivated by a powerful and emotional back-story.
The inspiration for forming RAS was Alex’s much loved and missed wife Sheila, who lived with dementia in her final years. Fiona was her professional carer. The idea of a team was put into action by Rab Jobson, lead driver, while Alex and Fiona chose to focus on supporting and promoting issues and projects around Alzheimer’s, mental health, and caring support.
Racing mainly in Super Lap Scotland events at Knockhill Racing Circuit in Fife and occasionally at other venues in the UK, RAS drivers Alex Milne, Andrew Fahey, Rab Jobson and David Capstick have been flying round the racetrack in cars emblazoned with the logos of the charities, and other team sponsors who have united behind such a positive initiative. Fiona tried driving but scared herself so sticks to PR and marketing of the team.
Alex explains: “We use the exposure that motorsport brings to benefit our causes. This allows them to expand their audience and to raise awareness of charities helping people with dementia, their carers and people who suffer from mental health issues.
“RAS team members have first-hand experience of dealing with people who have mental health issues and living with Dementia, but we also understand how fun, laughter and friendship works to bring light into challenging situations.
“We want to raise awareness and offer hope, direct people to our fabulous charities and their services. We are passionate about our cause and want to use our platform to help others. No-one should go through this life-changing time without professional support. We need a cure, we need treatment, we need help.”
RAS have already enjoyed success on and off the track this season, winning a few trophies and striking up an additional partnership with Pier Brasserie in Newhaven, Edinburgh, to help fundraise for their charities.
Underlining their compassionate approach, RAS team members also took time to arrange a poignant surprise for their founder Alex, by unfurling an advertising hoarding at Knockhill, with the headline: ‘Sheila Milne: the driving force behind Racing Awareness Scotland’.
“This started as a surprise from the team to commemorate my late wife's viewing spot and, eventually, her final resting place. She would have been secretly flattered and proud,” he said.
Colin Leslie, Communications and Fundraising Manager