THE crowdfunding target for the blogger and columnist known as the Wee Ginger Dug has been smashed – and continues to rise.

Paul Kavanagh appeals to the public annually “with considerable trepidation” and although he writes part-time for The National, his blog is his full-time job – which he now heavily relies on for income since his stroke in 2020 left him permanently disabled. He lost the ability to drive, write with his dominant hand, and to walk unaided.

Just two weeks after the fundraiser was launched, the support of the public saw it hit the £5000 target – and has just passed £6000 milestone.

Kavanagh wants to continue providing his amusing and articulate arguments for independence – however, in order to do so, “I need to eat and pay my bills”, he said.

The columnist continued: “Usually I ask for £10,000. I’m only asking for £5000 this year as I have not been able to blog as much as I have previously done and I can’t guarantee that level of regular content.

“I’ve had to teach myself to type with only my right hand and I just don’t have the dexterity or energy I used to.”

Kavanagh was one of the founding members of Newsnet Scotland back in 2011.

Apart from the politics of an independent Scotland and the independence movement, he previously created Gaelic maps and travelled all over the country giving talks about place names in Scotland and the complex and fascinating history of Scotland’s languages.

However, fatigue is one of the most common symptoms an individual can have after a stroke and Kavanagh is also prone to it.

“I always enjoyed public speaking and, to be honest, it’s a buzz, but to be constantly on the go, performing, using your voice, it can wipe you out normally – but after the stroke, I realised as a contribution to the independence movement, that part is over for me.”

Eager readers quickly began donating to Kavanagh’s crowdfunder on June 6 and two weeks later, the target broke to the surprise and joy of the recipient.

“I was very happy. I said to my husband that £3000 would be amazing so anything over £5000 is a delight.”

On the page, which has received 168 donations, comments from supporters include: “Mair meat fur The Dug!” and “Paul, you keep me sane with your calm wisdom. (Yer wit’s nae bad an’ a’, a ghaisgich.)”

A key voice for the independence movement, Kavanagh shared his thoughts on the latest independence progress.

He said: “I’m very happy we’ve finally got progress for a referendum. I was always convinced we would have another one, (Nicola Sturgeon is not stupid. She would know if we don’t have another one then it’s gonna be game over for the SNP) I’m glad of concrete progress to concentrate minds.

“On the blog, my aim is to provide arguments to soft No voters and undecided voters because as committed indy supporters, we know these things, but we have got to appeal to them to have a chance to get through.

“I want the next vote to be the last one.

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“The people we need to persuade are not interested in a Section 30 order or ‘Jack and Jill’ politics, they want to know what Scotland will be like; the pensions, the border and the EU.”

Kavanagh, who will turn 60 this year, had a message for all those who supported him.

He said: “I send my immense thanks and I’ll continue to articulate arguments for activists and young people to use because they should be at the forefront of this campaign.

“We’ve got a year and a half to do it so I want to say to everyone: we need to put divisions behind us and put forward a vision of an independent Scotland.”

You can find the fundraiser via or by going to