THE proud sons of legendary anti-poverty campaigner Cathy McCormack say she would be ‘chuffed and honoured’ to have a new community fund set up in her memory.

The 70-year-old former factory worker from Easterhouse, who passed away in 2022 following a long battle with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), made her name fighting tirelessly for better housing conditions in the Glasgow scheme where she raised her three children.

The Cathy McCormack Community Activism Fund has been set up to ensure that her memory lives on across the city by creating a £10,000 cash pot backed by the Glasgow Community Energy Co-operative.

The group, which Cathy helped to support while it was in its infancy, will use the money to help tackle poverty and mental health issues in some of the city’s most deprived areas.

Cathy’s son Gary told the Glasgow Times that the family were thrilled when they learned of the move to honour their mum’s legacy.

Glasgow Times: Gary with some of the people behind the project.Gary with some of the people behind the project. (Image: Supplied)

He said: “We are absolutely chuffed and honoured – as mum would be too.

“In the final years of her life, she got so much joy from seeing the next generation of community activists take up her fight for social, economic and environmental justice in Glasgow and across the world. We hope this new fund will inspire and support more local people to share mum’s vision for a fairer Scotland.”

The first round of cash will be split between a diverse selection of community organisations, made up by the St. Paul’s Youth ForumConnect Community TrustEast End Flat Pack Meals and Fuse Youth Café. They were chosen as projects which have been inspired by Cathy’s radical spirit which aim to address the root causes of poverty, not just the symptoms.

From 2027 onwards, the goal is to open up the grant scheme across the city to give other projects the opportunity to apply for help.

Neil Young, from St Paul's Youth Forum, said: “We are honoured to be one of the first recipients of the Cathy McCormack Community Activism Fund grants.

READ MORE: Family pay tribute to community champion hailed 'a local legend' after she tragically passes away.

“Cathy was an inspiration to many in our organisation. She was a local person who stood up against political forces to ensure that there was justice for all. We strongly believe in the power of local people coming together to make a difference.

“This help will enable people suffering from depression and other mental health issues to receive assistance with both food poverty and the climate emergency.

“We will use the grant towards creating a new social area at our base, somewhere people can sit and socialise but also a decorative area for quiet reflection. We will also buy some pollinator-friendly plants, tying in with Cathy’s love of the environment. We’re delighted to be able to support so many of her passions with this funding.”

Glasgow Times: Cathy McCormackCathy McCormack (Image: Supplied)

Fatima Uygun, a volunteer with The Pollokshields Trust, said: “We are honoured to be among the first recipients of money from this new fund. The grant will be used in Cathy’s honour to improve green spaces for our community and to ensure they are accessible and inclusive for all.

"Glasgow Community Energy is an incredible project that has brought huge benefits to communities across Glasgow and we are delighted to be involved.”

Cathy was known for her campaigning against damp housing conditions in council-owned schemes. In the early 1990s she helped to secure funding for a pioneering solar heating project on Glasgow’s Easthall housing scheme, the first of its kind anywhere in the world.

She successfully campaigned to win investment from the council to improve the dampness in the area's housing stock, an issue that was causing ill health and sickness in both young and old. She was asked to talk at demonstrations and press conferences and then found herself invited to seminars as her reputation as a powerful activist grew.

Her indomitable spirit and achievements made politicians sit up and take notice, and she was invited to the Houses of Parliament to discuss the link between poor housing and health. In 1992 she was involved in setting up the Scottish Public Health Alliance, a pressure group that pushed for health initiatives to improve the country's shameful record.

Cathy, who was a finalist in the Glasgow Times' Scotswoman of the Year in 1994, later penned her autobiography, The Wee Yellow Butterfly, where she told of the struggle many families like hers had faced just to put food on the table.