Renfrew engineering firm steps up to the mark with £28,000 Scottish charity donation

The Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland team with Howden's donation

WHEN accountant Michael Macdonald, of Newton Mearns, had two strokes at just 31 his colleagues wanted to show support. 

The finance team from engineering giants Howden in Renfrew, near Glasgow, joined forces with colleagues across the Globe to take part in the STEPtember walking challenge. 

Their incredible efforts have paid off with the teams raising a remarkable £28,000 going to Chest, Heart & Stroke Scotland, the charity that has been helping Michael in his recovery. 

The driving force behind the phenomenal fundraising effort has been Amy Wood, vice-president of Controlling & Operational Finance at Howden in Renfrew, and accountant Michael’s boss.  

Along with Maggie Fenton, Attila Takacs, James Morrison and Mike Bruce from the Renfrew team, Amy walked from Balloch to Partick to kick off their STEPtember challenge.  

Amy said: “The news of Michael’s stroke came as a huge shock to us all, and we have been very relieved to see his recovery progress over the past few months. Seeing his steps contributing to our weekly totals was a great motivation, and we are grateful to have been able to raise these funds through contributions from family and friends, as well as a very generous donation from our employer.  

“We hope these contributions will support the invaluable services provided by CHSS.”  

Michael added: “Work has been so supportive and understanding of me all through this last year. My boss Amy and my team have made me still feel part of everything. What they have done has been amazing, to raise this amount of money is incredible. I feel very proud of them.”  

The first stroke hit Michael out of the blue in March 2023 when he suddenly had no feeling in his legs or right arm and his speech and vision had gone. 

Emergency surgery removed a clot from his brain, and doctors at Glasgow’s Queen Elizabeth University Hospital told him the stroke had been caused by an endocarditis infection that had attacked his heart.  

While he was still in the stroke rehab ward, Michael had a second stroke, this time caused by an aneurysm. Emergency surgery followed again and he has since had to have heart surgery to fix a faulty valve. 

He said: “It’s been a very long road to recovery and I’m not there yet. But I have had great support from Tim at Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland. He had a stroke young like me, so I could really relate to what he told me about recovery. 

Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland is committed to reaching 150,000 people living with its conditions across Scotland by 2028 through its Community Healthcare Support Services.  

To find out more about fundraising for Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland visit  

If you’re living with the effects of heart disease and stroke and looking for advice and information, please contact Chest Heart & Stroke Scotland’s Advice Line on 0808 801 0899. You can also text NURSE to 66777 or email 

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