Alison calls on community

Alison Buchan and her guide dog Olga
Alison Buchan and her guide dog Olga

A Montrose guide dog owner is calling for the community to support a cause close to her heart by attending a charity gala ball in Aberdeen.

Guide Dogs Scotland is holding its most prestigious event of the year next month - the Aberdeen Shades of Summer Ball on Saturday, August 30, the Marcliffe Hotel, Aberdeen.

All the money raised from the ball will go towards the work the charity to does to ensure that blind and partially sighted people enjoy the same freedom of movement as everyone else.

Montrose-based guide dog owner, Allison Buchan knows only too well the life-changing services that Guide Dogs Scotland provides.

Her first guide dog Olga, a labrador retriever cross, has made a huge difference to her mobility and independence, helping her to get about the town safely.

Allison said: “Olga is brilliant. I used to use a cane to get about and it was difficult. I used to bash into things and I felt really alone.

“Now, everyone speaks to us and Olga knows all the places I want to go to.

“The other day, she took me to the hairdressers and cuddled down on the floor while I had my hair cut. It’s just really good having a guide dog and I wouldn’t be without one now.”

“She helps me get around obstacles, such as bins on pavements, by taking me on to the road sometimes and helping me back on the path.”

“I’d ask anyone who can to support the Aberdeen Ball. You’ll have a fantastic night out and be raising money for a great cause.

“And if you can’t, please think about volunteering for Guide Dogs Scotland.”

The Aberdeen Ball begins with a drinks reception at 7 p.m. on August 30.

Tickets are priced at £100 per head and can be bought as tables of 10 or 12, or individually, from David Cobban by e-mailing

The dress code is formal and there will be an auction and a raffle.

There will also be a prize of six bottles of champagne for the person with the best pair of decorated sunglasses.

A spokesperson from Guide Dog Scotland said: “There are around 530 guide dog owners in Scotland.

“It costs £5 per day to support each working guide dog partnership.

“The lifetime cost of a guide dog is around £50,000.

“Guide Dogs Scotland receives no government funding for the guide dog service, which is funded entirely through public generosity.”