Updated: Sep 8
Members of a north-east gym have celebrated completing a One Million Kilo Challenge on behalf of Scotland’s international healthcare charity, EMMS International — with 74-year-old Buckie woman Naomi Moir kicking off the effort as well as lifting the weight to take the total over a million.
Fitness fanatics at Wright Fitness in Buckie have committed to raising £5000 as the 19-year-old gym becomes the first EMMS International corporate partner, where businesses throughout Scotland support the charity while fulfilling their corporate social responsibility goals.
The Edinburgh-based charity, EMMS International positively impacts the lives of people in Scotland, Malawi, Nepal and India, offering respite to people with life-limiting conditions in Scotland and developing health services and healthcare infrastructure for people in extreme poverty.
“We totally smashed our target and ended up lifting 1,084,142 kilos on machines and free weights in the gym,” explained Helen Wright, 41, from Elgin, who owns and runs the gym alongside husband Graeme, 50. “We tried to make it as accessible to as many of our members as possible and had some of our pilates participants, families, and personal trainers all taking part. We have surpassed our goal, and have already brought in £600 with donations still to be collected, we hope to hit the high hundreds.
“Once we’ve recovered from this, we plan on taking on more challenges to raise money for EMMS International and ensuring the community is able to benefit from them.”
Members pushed or pulled as many kilos as possible across the weekend via exercises such as leg presses, shoulder presses, bent over rows and deadlifts. The total figure raised by their efforts will be split between EMMS International, and Moray Monday Club, a charity which supports people in Moray living with dementia.
“It's just great to bring people together,” Helen says. “It's good for people's mental health to be involved and gives them a little bit of purpose and a reason to be getting fitter or stronger. Most people are very good at doing something for someone else, not so much at doing it for themselves. So they're managing to get a little bit of something out of both sides of the scale, they're doing something positive with their own being but it's benefiting charity at the same time.”
The gym, which won the prestigious Community Involvement Award at the Scottish Health and Fitness Awards in July 2022, has previously organised many community events where they have thought up challenges to help people work on their fitness and raise money for charity.
Helen chose to support EMMS International because the charity is “trying to make a better life for everybody all round” and Moray Monday Club as she views it as an “invaluable service” for the local community.
Euan McIntyre, fundraising manager for EMMS International, said: "The owners and members of Wright Fitness have shown great strength and generosity in collectively lifting one million kilograms to support the work of EMMS International.
“We are delighted that Wright Fitness are our first corporate partner and look forward to supporting their members and fundraising efforts throughout the year. It’s easy to become a corporate partner to demonstrate support for people living in extreme poverty – whilst motivating staff and customers alike.”