Caroline Brown, from Hawick in the Scottish Borders, is heading for the hills later this month to support a hub for veterans in the town. She’s taking on the West Highland Way to raise funds for FirstLight Trust, a charity helping former members of the armed forces adjust to civilian life…

“I joined FirstLight Trust last year as their hub co-ordinator,” says Caroline. “I’ve seen first-hand the amazing difference we make. Veterans have said to me that we make their lives easier, that they’re glad we’re here. We never turn anyone away, we’re there for the long haul and there is no time limit on our support.”

Hawick is one of the charity’s six hubs across the UK offering support to veterans. No appointment is needed and they are open every day except Sundays, doubling as cafés for the public and veterans alike. Trained staff help with issues such as dealing with red tape, form filling and debt management. They also offer deeper support with settling back in to civilian life after service, addiction, depression, anxiety and PTSD.

“Caroline has been such an inspiration at our Hawick hub,” says Dorinda Wolfe Murray, the founder of FirstLight Trust. “She’s helped set up crafts fairs, stalls at the Trinity Gardens Christmas market, Remembrance Sunday commemorations and a Burns Lunch. Walking 96 miles really is above and beyond her job description, but we’re proud to support her every step of the way!”

The West Highland Way stretches 96 miles (154 km) from Milngavie to Fort William. Its terrain ranges from loch shores to steep mountains. Caroline will start walking the week-long route on 25 April with her friend Sonja and fellow walkers are welcome to join them, even if it’s just for part of the walk. Donations can be made online or in person at the hub on Hawick High Street.