Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Irvine Welsh launches 5,000-mile charity walking challenge

Irvine Welsh Image copyright PA
Image caption Irvine Welsh walked down the Royal Mile in Edinburgh to launch the appeal

Writer Irvine Welsh has launched a 5,000-mile virtual walking challenge to raise money for a Scottish charity which supports poor children in India.

The Trainspotting author walked the first mile of the 5,000, which is the distance between Edinburgh and Hyderabad.

Scottish Love in Action (SLA) wants volunteers to do the minimum of a 10km sponsored walk, run or cycle in June.

The Hoof It to Hyderabad Challenge is part of its Girls' Lives Matter appeal.

Welsh, a long-term ambassador of the charity, opened registration for the fundraiser at Edinburgh Castle Esplanade before setting off down the Royal Mile.

Participants are asked to walk, run or cycle at least 15,133 steps, which will contribute towards the charity's aim to virtually walk a total of 12,106,000 steps.

SLA provides funding to three grassroots, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), which run projects in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.

Founder and chairwoman Gillie Davidson said: "Many of the children we care for have only managed to survive by scavenging in rubbish tips, or living on the streets where they are open to being trafficked into prostitution or forced labour.

"All the money we raise from challenges like Hoof it to Hyderabad give these children a chance in life and we'd like to thank everyone for this support."

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