Still dancing, (from the music in Fleur East’s DJ set) smiling and wiping the tears of emotion following on last Friday’s Street Soccer Scotland International Women’s Day Gala Lunch.

A huge congratulations to Street Soccer Scotland on a wonderful, inspiring, human and high performing event, the tonic we all needed amidst COVID-19 virus-related concerns.

An audience of more than 250 people gathered for lunch at the EICC to celebrate international women’s day and listen to Mollie Hughes, adventurer and Sarah, one of the coaches from Street Soccer Scotland in conversation with Alison Walker.  With the IWD mantra this year “each for equal”, it was wonderful and awe-inspiring to hear from two women, Mollie and Sarah with such different life experiences being so open, honest and candid about addressing their challenges and winning out whether overcoming addiction or going back and crossing life-threateningly deep crevasses on the slopes of Everest time and again.  You could have heard a pin drop as Mollie and Sarah told their stories – except of course when the whole audience was encouraged to swear loudly and in unison!

The shared experience among the audience and those on stage, was truly inspiring both from the point of view of admiring what those women have achieved and how that can inspire others. Hearing how Mollie dealt with an 8 day white-out in the early days of her 58 day solo trek to the south pole pulling a sled with her supplies and tent and having to draw on her psychology degree to find the inner resource to keep herself going – Mollie described the white out as “like being on the inside of a ping-pong ball” and found what kept her going was yelling to herself regularly certain set phrases – including one repeatedly loudly by the audience “I’m a ****ing badass!” – a real life-coaching moment for all of those, like me, thinking only about how cold it must be (great comfort to know however that you can get a hot water bottle to tuck up with even when your in your tent on your own on the way to the south pole!).

And then with #oneteam spirit flowing in abundance, many embarked on a dance floor adventure to Fleur East’s late afternoon set- a fantastic way to kick off the weekend.

Well done Street Soccer.

The Burness Paull Foundation was delighted to be an event partner of the Street Soccer Scotland Women Inspired Gala Lunch, raising awareness and showing support for the fantastic work Street Soccer do helping people change their lives for the better.