Town teen starts dementia charity
After seeing how dementia affected his grandparents, a North Berwick teen has decided to take a stand and has enlisted celebrity help for his new charity.
Ryan Nicolson, 16, has been asking TV and music stars to get involved in ForgetMeNot, a charity he set up to fight dementia and raise funds for North Berwick Day Centre.
The North Berwick High School pupil, who lives at Gilsland, has already enlisted the support of TV presenter Amanda Hamilton, while Leon Jackson and several musicians are following his charity on Twitter and pledging donations.
Now comedian Ronnie Corbett, who hs a home in Gullane, is next on Ryan's list as he tries to find collectors' items for a planned auction.
"I'm having a meeting with Amanda Hamilton where we're going to get things together and see what we can do," Ryan told the Courier. "I go to the Macdonald Marine gym with her husband so I'm quite good friends with him.
"I had a meeting with him yesterday [Monday] and now she's trying to boost the charity.
"The next step is talking to Ronnie Corbett so I'm emailing him to see if he can help. I'm just trying to do things that boost the charity up."
Ryan only came up with the idea for the charity two months earlier and has wasted no time in getting it off the ground.
"I started it because both my grans have dementia and I really wanted to do something to help people," he said. "There's also a very big chance of getting it myself when I'm older.
"I came up with the idea on a day when I went to my gran's, saw what she was like and I just thought I wanted to do something.
"So I started thinking about what people at school would buy, what would make money, so I thought of wristbands, as they're coming in just now and I've been making them and selling them.
"I'm also trying to find a tree in North Berwick to put very little cards on it to remember people with dementia.
"I'm trying to do small things that will get the community together, both young and old people."
Ryan is still waiting on getting a charity number but hopes to do so ahead of the auction and of an event he is planning in the day centre in the summer.
He hopes to hold a bake sale there on July 2, with all the profits going to the day centre. He's hoping to organise the auction for beforehand.
Ryan's hard work is already bearing fruit, as he is presenting the day centre with a cheque for £100 on Monday. And with a series of ambitious events and plans lined up, he hopes there will be plenty more to come.