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Let him go: Lanarkshire teen lands once in a lifetime trip to Antarctica

A Lanarkshire teenager has been picked to participate in an incredible journey to Antarctica.

Daniel Ward, 19, will travel to the most southerly and remote part of the globe in November, after being chosen as one of only 10 people selected for the expedition out of 700 nominations.

But there'll be no time for chilling before then, as Daniel begins work on a huge project he hopes will inspire thousands of his fellow Lanarkshire residents - and give real purpose to his venture.

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Hailing from Carstairs, Daniel will centre on an environmental initiative around the rural areas of Clydesdale and look to work with youngsters to make the area more attractive for people to visit.

This will be tied in with research he will carry out during his time in Antarctica where he will learn first-hand the impacts of climate change, feed this back to his community, and inspire others to take action.

The journey itself is already looking a daunting prospect, but one Daniel can't wait to be on.

Daniel Ward

He will first travel to London where he'll depart on a plane to Argentina.

And from there he will make his way to Ushuaia, one of the most southern parts of South America, and proceed on a four-day boat journey to Antarctica.

Daniel, an apprentice plumber and member of the Lanark Scouts, will then spend four days on the icy continent, spending time up close with penguins, seals and even whales.

In a moving video, Daniel is told he has been chosen for the trip as he struggles to keep his cool in finding out his opportunity of a lifetime is only months away.

The expedition is organised by We Two Foundation who set up the project to take young people from disadvantaged areas into a world of adventure.

Daniel was nominated by his Scout leader Andrew Sharkey who he paid special tribute to in putting him forward for the trip.

He told Lanarkshire Live : "He's played a massive part in helping me get this. If it wasn't for him nominating me in the first place I would never have been considered."

And looking ahead to the expedition, Daniel said: "We were told at the time about a year ago that if we didn't hear by October then assume you're not going.

"I had accepted I wasn't going but then I got an email in February asking me to make a short video and send it in.

"A couple of months later they emailed to say they'd like to come and meet me and film it at the Scout hall.

"I did a 40-minute interview with them. They asked a lot of questions about the area and Lanark and how I would be able to help young people locally if I went on the trip.

"I told them about Lanark Scouts and how it's the biggest rural Scouts group in the UK and how we have the Clyde on our doorstep.

"They wanted us to come up with an environmental initiative so I decided to make mine around the Clyde."

Daniel hopes to include the wider Scouts community and get them involved in his mission.

He explained: "I've got a massive platform with potentially hundreds of Scouts that can get involved with an environmental initiative.

"When I come back I can share my story and hopefully inspire young people to be able to go on their own adventure.

"The trip will involve researching how climate change is affecting things in Antarctica such as icebergs, or whales, penguins or seals.

"When I'm in Antarctica and off the boat I'll be kayaking or on the actual ice. There'll be lots I'll be close up to.

"It's definitely an opportunity of a lifetime and it's probably been the thing that I've thought about most since I found out I was going.

"I'll have a lot of work to do certainly getting ready and my local initiative for it so I'm very excited. The journey starts now."

"I must've stood out somehow", Daniel added.

"I'm pleased with that and made them realise that I'm the best person to be part of their team.

"I've always felt very passionately about the environment, and especially through the Scouts there's been a lot of work I've done before."

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