AN IRVINE dad says he is “overwhelmed” after a fitness group he started amassed more than 1,100 members in just six weeks.

Kevin Brown set up Fit Ayrshire Dads in a bid to improve men’s physical and mental health and within weeks had hundreds of men contacting him.

Dad-of-two Kevin says what started as a “wee Facebook group” has transformed into a movement promoting mental heath and fitness to local men.

He told the Times: “The reaction has been overwhelming. I am a dad myself and I wanted to help other dads who were struggling and feeling the pressures of life in general.

“After speaking to a few people I realised there are a lot of guys out there who, through various social pressures, don’t feel like they can speak up when they are finding things hard so I set the group up. They can come online and speak openly and freely about anything at all. There is no judgement, no ridicule, only support and encouragement.

As well as offering moral support, Kevin’s group has also set up a number of fitness challenges.

He said: “When the group had around 500 members I said confidently that if we hit 1,000 members I would do a forfeit of their choice. But then I competed in the Great Scottish Run last weekend and was interviewed by the BBC which was great for publicising the group, but it meant that the number of members topped 1,000 that day. So I have been set a challenge by the guys that I have to climb Goatfell three times in one day, dressed as Rambo.

“I am not sure if I’ll survive that, but I will give it a good shot.”

All proceeds from Kevin for his Goatfell triple climb will go to SAMH - the Scottish Association for Mental Health. To sponsor Kevin visit /