A TEAM of 10 cyclists led by 19-year-old Hassan al-Husari from Glasgow left on an epic journey from Scotland to Syria to raise money for a very worthwhile cause - Syrian orphans and widows who have been devastated by the on-going conflict.

The Scotland to Syria Cycle is a gruelling 3300 mile, 45 day challenge, but the team are taking it on with the aim of raising enough money to provide hundreds of vulnerable orphans and widows who have fled from the conflict in Syria with a safe 'village' on the border between Syria and Turkey.

The village will give them secure surroundings and essentials such as clean water, a kitchen and shelter, as well as a school, medical centre and a mosque.

The team is doing us all proud and are hoping to raise a substantial £250,000 for the women and children who are so greatly affected by a terrible conflict.

They are a great example of how our city continues to step up when others are in need. To find out more and to donate to the Scotland to Syria Cycle effort visit http://www.justgiving.com/cycle fromscotlandtosyria

THERE can be no argument that Glasgow is the gigging city.

Our city has hosted legends like Prince and the best ever line-up of artists playing at Radio 1's Big Weekend.

The Hydro turned purple to welcome Prince and Glasgow showed that it's the best destination for big music gigs. And there are still great performances to come when the Hydro again hosts world-class acts in November for the MTV Europe Music Awards.

On top of great music our city is known for its world-class universities, and one of the Scottish Government's most important policies with the greatest impact was abolishing tuition fees for Scottish students studying at Scottish universities.

It is great to see a survey carried out by the Higher Education Policy Institute showing higher satisfaction amongst students in Scotland than in the rest of the UK, which highlights the strength of Scotland's higher education sector and the damaging impact of Westminster's tuition fees south of the border.

The survey found that 70% of undergraduates in Scotland believe their degree offers good or very good value for money, in comparison to only 41% in England.

These results demonstrate the benefits of delivering first class higher education based on the ability to learn rather than the ability to pay.

Here in Glasgow we have fantastic higher education and we benefit from students across Scotland choosing to study in our city. For our children's sake it is important we protect it.

And finally I would like to wish Neil Lennon every success in the future - as a Celtic fan I have huge admiration for what he has achieved for the club.

Although I'm sad to see him go I'm quite excited about the prospective successors being mentioned.