The October recess at the Scottish Parliament has concluded this week and so I am back in Edinburgh to represent the people of Glasgow Anniesland.

This new Parliamentary term has already been very productive, and I am looking forward to what the next few months will bring.

In September, I hosted a drop-in event with the Anthony Nolan Trust at the Parliament to raise awareness for the need of BAME (black and minority ethnic) stem cell donors and allow my fellow MSPs to meet Olly, pictured right, a wonderful six-year-old boy who was a successful recipient of a stem cell transplant.

More than 70 MSPs, including First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, stopped by for a chat and to register their support.

I also took the opportunity to see the new Macmillan Cancer Centre at the Beatson at Gartnavel.

I met with the staff employed at the oncology unit and with relatives of cancer patients being treated there, and was very impressed with the quality of the facility and with the professionalism of the staff.

This month, I visited Antonine Primary in Drumchapel.

I had the privilege of speaking with the P4 pupils about how politics works and watched as the class formed their own political parties.

I believe there are future MSPs in that class.

I also attended the Healing for the Heart Whiteinch Transformation Project, which helps people with alcohol and drugs dependencies overcome their addictions by providing social contact and mental health care.

One of many ways it helps our community is by encouraging clients with education and employment opportunities.

I’d also like to congratulate former Knightswood Secondary pupil, Rachel Sweeney, for being shortlisted as a potential recipient of the SQA ‘school candidate of the year’ prize.

We wish her a successful first semester at Oxford University.

I’m looking forward to meeting local boy, Kash Farooq from Scotstoun, who at the end of September won the British bantamweight title.

We’re meeting at an event I’m privileged to sponsor on behalf of the Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service in Parliament, to promote this years ‘Scottish Ahlul Bayt Societies Blood Drive.

Kash is taking part to help spread the word on blood donations within the local Muslim communities. Well done that young man.