BY Martin Dunlop | January 25 | comments icon 0 COMMENTS     print icon print

20-MARTHA-PAYNE

Schoolgirl blogger beats top sportsman to Scot of the Year award

Martha Payne, who raised £120,000 and counting for Mary’s Meals, says beating Andy Murray and Sir Chris Hoy to the ScotsCare 2012 title on Burns Night is 'very special'

Martha Payne, the schoolgirl blogger who has raised more than £120,000 for Mary’s Meals charity, has been named the 2012 Scot of the Year.

Ten-year-old Martha made headlines across the world last year as a result of her school meals blog, NeverSeconds, which was taken down by Argyll and Bute Council before being re-instated following a public outcry. Martha encouraged visitors to her blog site, which pictured and rated her school meals, to make a donation to Mary’s Meals, a charity that feeds hungry school children around the world. She has subsequently managed to raise more than £120,000 for the Dalmally-based charity.

The award was announced today, to mark the feast of Scotland’s national bard, Robert Burns, by the charity ScotsCare.

On learning that she had beaten athletes Andy Murray and Sir Chris Hoy to first place in the public vote, Martha said it felt ‘very special.’

“I wish everyone in the final could have won as well because they have all put smiles on so many people’s faces this year,” Martha, who is from Lochgilphead, said. “It is very kind that people have voted for me. I have only done a little bit and lots of people have helped by doing a little bit as well.”

In October of last year, Martha attended the opening of a kitchen in Malawi that had been was funded by money she raised for Mary’s Meals. She was quick to pay tribute to the children that had left such a lasting impression on her.

“I would like to share the award with everyone that has donated and all the kids in Malawi that we are supporting with Mary’s Meals and especially those Lirangwe where the ‘Friends of NeverSeconds’ kitchen is,” Martha said, before going on to reveal that she will be celebrating Burns Day in traditional fashion at dinnertime.

“I know dad has bought a haggis for tea because I have seen it in the fridge,” Martha said. “I love haggis and we’ll celebrate with that tonight!”

 

—martin@sconews.co.uk

 

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