A CROSSHILL support worker has been showing the benefits of social media by helping to raise thousands of pounds for local charities.

Laura McConnell set up a Facebook group called Killer Queens earlier this year and, with competitions and appeals for donations, has already been able to help a range of good causes.

This week she handed 20 winter survival packs – worth around £1,300 – to the Homeless Outreach Project to help people living rough on the streets of Scotland.

Laura has been delighted with the response she has had from her group which currently boasts around 1,400 members.

"I started about six months ago when I began doing games and donations and do something every month for different charities so sometimes people donate money and sometimes they donate stuff," she explained.

"We also put things up for raffles and use that money for buying materials. It is really good. The last one has been the biggest one. I just thought because it is the cold weather coming in. Usually I put a poll up and everybody votes and we see what is the most popular.

"It is all brand new stuff as well – twenty sleeping bags, rain jackets, mats, everything you would need. I got in touch with the Homeless Outreach and they came out and picked them up. They will hand them to where they are most needed. They work with these people every day and they will know who are the most vulnerable."

Laura is keen for more people to join the group so they can continue to help organisations and individuals in need.

"At the moment there are about 1,400 people in the group. About 90 per cent of people from the Dunfermline and Fife area but some are from further away. We have even got some people from America.

"Anyone can join. This month we are going to be doing something for the Soup Kitchen and also doing something for a charity for older people who don't have family so we will split it.

"I just like helping people. It makes me happy and the people on the group are amazing."