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Top writer backs Moray story writing challenge

By Alistair Whitfield

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One of Scotland's best authors has given her enthusiastic backing to a Moray charity's story writing idea.

John and Christine Carney, who live in Garmouth, have been travelling regularly to Tanzania ever since they retired.

John and Christine Carney
John and Christine Carney

Over the past six years the couple's charity, Busega Scotland, has raised tens of thousands to support orphaned children as well as other vulnerable groups in the African country.

Lockdown has now limited everyone’s ability to get around.

So Busega Scotland has launched a story writing project to keep folk connected.

John said: "If we can't get out and experience things ourselves, then maybe we can share things indirectly.

"We hope folk can write and share wee stories about their life experiences.

"The stories can be about anything and everything with the potential to raise a smile."

Busega Scotland's People and Places project is for all ages and the young people at its Tanzanian children’s home will also be taking part.

Scottish writer and academic A L Kennedy urged people from Moray to join in and showcase their storytelling abilities.

Scottish writer A L Kennedy
Scottish writer A L Kennedy

She said: "I spent 10 years or so working in communities in Scotland with creative writing – it is a wonderful and useful thing.

"We need bread and we need roses too. People and Places understands this.

"It is a great project from a great place."

Along with the children’s home in Tanzania, Busega Scotland also supports a leaving-care service, women’s groups, village community banks, a water and sanitation project, as well as a rural primary school.

Covid-19 is presenting unprecedented challenges.

These include increasing costs in Tanzania as well as finding the funds to meet existing commitments.

To submit stories, which should be a maximum of about 300 words, contact John and Christine at busegascotland@gmail.com

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