The latest news and information for community-led health
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Issue 274 - 12th March 2015

Hello, and welcome to issue 274 of CHEX-Point Snippets. As always, this issue contains all the latest news and information relating to community-led health. If you have any news or updates from your own work locally that you would like mentioned in Snippets please get in touch. Click here if you would like to view this e-bulletin online or read any previous issues of Snippets. 

If you or anyone else you know would like to subscribe to CHEX-Point Snippets please visit

The next issue will be published on Thursday 26th March February 2015. Please send anything you would like to be included before Tuesday 24th March.

You can send information/material for inclusion in CHEX-Point Snippets by sending an email to or phone CHEX on 0141 248 1990. You can also tweet @SCDC_Sam. CHEX-Point Snippets is provided by CHEX – Community Health Exchange and this edition was compiled by Sam Jordan. Thanks to all contributors to this edition.

Sam Jordan
Information and Communications Officer, SCDC


(N.B. click on the heading links below to jump immediately to the relevant section)

CHEX News and General Information

Conferences and seminars


Communities at the heart of a healthy democracy
This article is excerpted from the latest issue of CHEX-Point Newsletter - read the full issue here

The Scottish independence referendum on September 18th 2014 mobilised community activity and social action across the country. With the Smith Commission’s further devolution of powers from Westminster to the Scottish Parliament, and calls for strengthened participatory democracy, there is a growing demand for communities to have more say over their own future. 

A healthy democracy?

The referendum generated a great deal of debate about Scotland’s future and there was substantial increase in the level of democratic participation in the build up to the referendum. Grassroots political groups, community events and social media conversations sprung up across the country, with an eventual voter turnout of 84.6%; unprecedented in recent British election history. What is more, many of the groups and campaigns around the referendum had a clear focus on social justice.For those of us working in community development and related fields, this is a positive reminder of the power of community mobilisation in affecting positive social change.

Community-led health

Opportunities for community-led health have arisen out of these developments. A positive policy environment strengthens our case for increased investment in community-led health. At the same time, communities in Scotland and the services designed to support them are being placed under increased strain as a result of the UK Government’s austerity measures. There is, for some, an uncomfortable link between government spending cuts and the growing political interest in community-led approaches i.e. is the approach being used as a panacea for cut-back in services. We would argue that community-led is only part of the picture and not a replacement for the structural measures required to deliver effective public services that reduce inequalities. 

The challenge for our sector is to show that our skills, experience and  community roots have a huge amount to offer in these areas. This could pay dividends both in terms of increasing local activity around health and wellbeing and also in making the case for support and investment from decision makers and funders.

Community-led health in action - photography opportunity
CHEX is currently looking to commission a photographer to take a series of photos of community-led health organisations 'in action'.

We're hoping to refresh our photography bank to help us illustrate our publications, briefings and newsletters with these photos and ask any community-led health organisations who are interested in being 'subjects' to get in touch.

In exchange, we will give you full, high resolution copies of the photos which you can use for your organisation or group.

This is an extremely limited offer and we will only be able to visit a handful of organisations. Organisations will be chosen based on various themes (location, type of work etc.) to ensure we have a broad range of different types of organisations featured.

To submit your community-led health organisation, click here

CHEX on Facebook
Readers are reminded that CHEX has a Facebook page where we highlight the work we're doing but also share the work of CHEX Network members, and anything related to community-led health.

You can view the page at:

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General Information

Public Health England guide to community-centred approaches to health and wellbeing
A new report from Public Health England urges decision makers in health to shift to more person and community centred ways of working in public health and healthcare.

A guide to community-centred approaches for health and wellbeing is the conclusion of the first stage of a project in England called ‘Working with communities – empowerment, evidence and learning’.  This project began in 2014 and aims to draw together and disseminate evidence and learning on community-centred approaches to health and wellbeing.  The project reflects a ‘whole-of-society’ approach which the report authors state has emerged in England.

A family of community-centred approaches to achieving health goals is identified within the report, including community development, asset based methods, community-based participatory research, co-production, time banking, participatory budgeting, social prescribing and healthy living centres.  These are all introduced in the guide, with the common factor being that they start with communities as building blocks for health.  

Furthermore, the authors recognise the importance of community capacity building to support disadvantaged communities to participate in these approaches, and also the important political element of using such methods – in that they can help communities to “challenge the status quo and campaign for more equitable distribution of resources, changes in services or policy”

As in Scotland, there is clearly a lot to do before such approaches become widespread, and the report states that: “Community-centred ways of working have often been poorly understood and located on the fringes of mainstream practice, which has largely been dominated by professionally-led solutions”.

To move forward, Public Health England provide a set of recommendations for decision makers, including planning how such methods can “become an essential part of local health plans” and to involve disadvantaged communities in addressing health inequalities.

This report from England comes at a useful time in Scotland, with the Public Health Review currently in progress.  CHEX has submitted a response to this consultation making some of the same points as the above report, and we would hope that those conducting the review take on board some of the report’s forward-thinking recommendations. Read the CHEX response here.

Read the full Public Health England report here

Evidence for Community-led health report
Community Health Exchange (CHEX) has written a report of its Evidence for Community-led Health workshop, which took place on the 20th February 2015.  The report summarises the workshop and the findings that came out of it.  It also provides links to further useful resources.

The workshop was designed to help community organisations make their case to policy makers and funders, and it was based on the Evidence for Success guide which was published last year by the Knowledge Translation Network, which CHEX is a member of.  Similar workshops were delivered last year by the Knowledge Translation Network, and the CHEX training focused on the elements we thought were most relevant to community-led health organisations.

Download the CHEX Evidence for Community-led Health workshop report here.

UK Parliament passes plain packaging legislation
MPs have voted in favour of introducing standardised packaging for cigarettes in the UK. It means from 2016 every packet will look the same except for the make and brand name, with graphic photos accompanying health warnings if the House of Lords also approves the move.

In Scotland, tobacco sales are currently devolved meaning that the Scottish Parliament will have to pass similar legislation for the rules to be applied here. The issue is currently due to be debated, but with this wider UK move looks likely to pass as well.

More here.

Community Empowerment Scotland Bill amendments
The Scottish Parliament Local Government and Regeneration Committee has agreed to a set of amendments to the Community Empowerment Scotland Bill that were put forward by the Poverty Alliance, Oxfam and Barnardo’s and supported by Scottish Community Development Centre as well as a range of other organisations.

These changes included provisions to set out what support public service authorities must make available to communities to make and complete a request, and to set out the type of communities that may require additional support.  It also called for greater rights to appeal for communities when participation requests are turned down and for public service authorities reporting on outcome improvement processes to seek the views of those bodies that made a participation request on how the process was conducted and whether it has led to local improvements.

More here

Scottish Anti-Poverty Review - New Powers Edition
The Poverty Alliance has published the latest edition of the Scottish Anti Poverty Review which looks at the devolution of new powers to the Scottish Parliament and what these may mean. It includes articles looking at powers over tax, welfare, housing and health.

You can read this online here

New Chief Medical Officer
Dr Catherine Calderwood has been appointed as the Scottish Government’s new Chief Medical Officer. Dr Calderwood whas been Acting Deputy Chief Medical Officer, following the retirement of Sir Harry Burns last year.

As Chief Medical Officer, Dr Calderwood will be the chief adviser to Scottish Ministers on a wide range of issues to protect, sustain and enhance the health of the population and foster professionalism and excellence in medical practice in Scotland.

Welcoming the appointment, Shona Robison, Cabinet Secretary for Health Wellbeing and Sport, said:

“Scotland can be rightly proud of many significant improvements in the health of the population and world leading developments in the NHS and medical practice. This is why the Scottish Government has set such ambitious plans for improving health, reducing inequalities and being at the forefront of delivering the highest quality healthcare through our NHS.

More here

Health Stats published
NHS Scotland Information Services Division has published a range of health statistics, available here.

The Cumulative Impact of Welfare Reform on Households in Scotland
The Scottish Parliament's report looks at the cumulative impact on various household types.  It reveals that families with dependent children and people with health problems and disabilities will lose the most financially once the full reforms take effect. The Scottish Parliament's Welfare Reform Committee has issued a short video summarising the findings, here

More information here

How does your local authority perform?
A Scottish Parliament Committee is currently consulting on a benchmarking website which allows you to compare your local authority with others on a whole range of measures. 

The Local Government and Regeneration Committee is examining how the SOLACE/Improvement Service benchmarking framework helps the public engage with the work of local councils.

The Local Government Benchmarking Framework contains a wide range of information about how Scottish councils perform in delivering better services to local communities, including the cost of services and how satisfied citizens are with them.   Put simply, it allows members of the public to measure the performance of their local council against other councils across Scotland.

The Committee wants to hear people's views on the Benchmarking system, and will take their views into account when taking evidence from IS and SOLACE Scotland on 25 March 2015 on the benchmarking system.

See more on how to submit your views here

Latest welfare reform news

With welfare reform continuing to dominate the headlines, CHEX brings you some of the latest news from around Scotland relating to welfare and community-led health: 
  • A new report from a coalition of major UK Churches has revealed that around 6,500 children in Scotland were affected by benefit sanctions in 2013/14. It recommends the urgent reform of the hardship payments system to avoid the deliberate imposition of hunger and urges the UK Government to suspend all sanctions against families with children and those suffering from mental health problems.
News from other networks

CHEX has found the following e-bulletins interesting over the last fortnight:
  • Inclusion Scotland bulletin features useful information on a range of issues related to disability and equalities. More here.

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Islam Awareness Week Scotland
Over 30 Scottish Muslim organisations and institutions have come together to organise a week of diverse, stimulating and reflective events open to anyone who wishes to meet Muslims and learn more about Islam. It is an opportunity to promote awareness of the many shared values of Islam and highlight the contributions made by Muslims to our world.

They aim to engage the people of Scotland of all faiths, and none, in achieving a greater understanding of Islam and celebrate the unity and diversity of Muslim Scots as an integrated part of the Scottish community.

More information here.

The Big Lunch packs...unpacked
This year The Big Lunch have three types of Big Lunch pack available; full, lite and download. The full pack contains invites, posters, activity and recipe cards, stickers, seeds and lots of useful planning information plus a few new friendly faces! 

Our lite pack is perfect for Big Lunchers who’ve held a couple of lunches before; with the essentials to get an event off the ground, you’ll get invites, posters and stickers. The download pack has posters, invites, an activity sheet and leaflet ready to edit, save and print at home. 

Each pack is completely free and up for grabs so hurry and request yours today. More here

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Consultations and surveys

Effective citizen Scoping Exercise
Are citizens and community groups as effective as they could be? This is the question that is being asked by the Fred Edwards Trust and SCDC.

We want to find out if activists have access to the information, tools and skills they need, not just to tackle the issues that matter to them, but to challenge and address the root causes as well.

We would like to know to what extent citizens and community groups who are working on issues of social, economic and environmental justice find the space to help them critically analyse the policies, decisions and systems that affect them.

Our aim in doing this is to find out if more needs to be done to support active and effective citizenship in Scotland. We would be very grateful if you could take a few minutes to respond to the questions in the link below. 

More here.

Equal Opportunities Committee: Age and social Isolation
The Equal Opportunities Committee is looking into issues around age and social isolation and would like to hear your views.

More here. Deadline 13/3/15.

Working with Scotland's Communities survey
The 'Working with Scotland's Communities' survey is now live. This is a research study to find out more about the range of paid staff and volunteers in community learning and development roles across Scotland. These are people who do a wide range of learning and development work with individuals and groups of all ages in their communities, using both formal and informal methods. Almost everyone who carries out or manages community development work is likely to be eligible for inclusion, regardless of labels.

Phase one of the study is a survey aimed at the organisations and services that employ these staff and volunteers. We want to hear from all community, voluntary or public sector organisations, large or small, that employ paid staff or volunteers in community learning and development roles.

More here.

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Guide to involving young people in commissioning mental health services
This guide is aimed at those with a responsibility for commissioning mental health and wellbeing services for young people aged 16 - 25.
Although the Right Here programme focused primarily on early intervention in community settings, many of the lessons learnt- that are included in this guide - apply equally to the commissioning of services for more severe conditions. 

More here.

Uws-Oxfam Partnership, Collaborative Research Reports Series - Uws-Oxfam Partnership, Collaborative Research Reports Series
The UWS-Oxfam Partnership is a formally established relationship between the two organisations, underpinned by a Memorandum of Understanding. The Partnership emerged as a result of collaborative work between UWS staff and Oxfam and its community partner organisations, revolving around the development of Oxfam’s antipoverty advocacy and campaigning in Scotland.

This report focuses on a women’s organisation in Govan called Tea in the Pot (TITP). The report considers TITP in light of Ray Oldenburg’s concept of the ‘third place’ as a ‘great good place’. Based on interviews and focus group discussions with the women at TITP, it is suggested that TITP can be thought of as having ‘improvised’ a ‘third place’ in Govan, which has brought significant benefits to its members and to its wider community – on the basis of very limited resources. The second part raises the need for a viable common language which can allow local communities, policy makers, practitioners, NGOs, academics, etc. to speak together and to act together in confronting the problems in local communities.

Download the report here

Hints and tips for older people 
Wisdom in Practice is an ongoing project which aims to build on the skills, knowledge and confidence of older people. It works with older people across Scotland to make a difference to the opportunities and services they can use.

More here.

Report launched into Emergency Food Aid
New research from the Poverty Alliance has highlighted the extent of emergency food aid provision across Scotland, showing that many organisations and groups are giving urgent support to thousands of Scots every year. As part of a Scottish Government funded study into the role of food banks and other emergency food aid provider’s 167 providers of emergency food aid were identified. The research also showed that many of these organisations were providing more than food alone.

You can read the report online here.   

Open University poverty resources
The Open University has a large and growing collection of freely accessible learning resources on OpenLearn website, YouTube platform, and iTunes library. Together, these offer a wide range of resources relating to different aspects of poverty in Scotland, the UK and beyond.

Poverty in Scotland 2014: The Independence Referendum and Beyond (2014) is also available on OpenLearn here.

The UK Doughnut: A framework for environmental sustainability and social justice
The world faces twin challenges: delivering a decent standard of living for everyone, while living within our environmental limits. These two concerns are brought together in Oxfam’s Doughnut model, which visualizes a space between planetary boundaries and a social floor where it is environmentally safe and socially just for humanity to exist. Here, The UK Doughnut: A framework for environmental sustainability and social justice suggests areas of life that might constitute a social floor below which no-one in the UK should fall.

More here

CFHS National Networking Conference
Community Food and Health (Scotland) hosted a national networking conference in October 2014. This was an opportunity for participants to network with other community food colleagues. The aim of the conference was to provide a valuable day for those involved in tackling health inequalities through community food activity.

The conference allowed people to come together, learn from each other and share experience, evidence, hopes and concerns on all aspects of food, inequality and social justice. National activity as well as local practice was discussed and showcased. The day had an underlying theme of tackling health inequalities and promoting social justice through the medium of food. 

Download the event report here.

2014 Asylum Trends And Facts
Britain is not Europe’s top recipient of asylum applications. Germany, Sweden, France and Italy all receive significantly more applications than we do.
More here.

Digital Participation in Dumfries and Kirkcaldy
The Carnegie UK Trust and Ipsos MORI have published new research on digital exclusion in Scotland.

Access to the internet is an increasingly critical social inclusion issue. This new study examines barriers to internet use and how these barriers can be overcome. Findings are based on 400 in-depth interviews with internet users and non-users in Dumfries and Kirkcaldy. Its conclusions set out the central issues that must be considered in any effective strategy to tackle digital exclusion.

Download here

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Community Food Fund
The closing date for the next round of the Community Food Fund is Thursday 26 March. The Fund would welcome more applications from community food initiatives that want to create or enhance a food and drink network, group or community, a food trail, or local food/drink event(s). Groups can apply for up to £25,000. Applicants must show how they would benefit local food and drink producers. More details can be found here

The Tree Council – Orchard Windfalls Fund 2015
Schools and community groups across the UK can apply for funding towards fruit tree planting projects costing no more than £700. Children under 16 must be engaged in some aspect of the project. Deadline is 31st March 2015. More here

Voluntary Arts Scotland – Event Expenses Fund
20 awards of £100 each are available to help groups and projects in Scotland take part in this year’s Voluntary Arts Week (15-24 May 2014). Deadline is 12noon on 13th March 2015

More here.

See Me funding
See Me is Scotland’s programme to tackle mental health stigma and discrimination. It is funded by the Scottish Government and Comic Relief and managed by Scottish Association for Mental Health and The Mental Health Foundation.

Three funds will be opening for applications on 1 April 2015:
  • Community Innovation Fund – grants for new and existing Change Networks (up to £20,000) for year-long projects focusing on behaviour change within communities. Last year, a total of £118,667 was awarded to six Change Networks.
  • Local Community Innovation Fund – grants of up to £4,000 for small, local projects lasting between 2 and 6 months typically. Last year, a total of £63,840 was awarded to 18 local organisations.
  • Change Network Fund – grants of up to £2,000 to develop partnership working around a specific theme or geographical area. This will be a rolling fund with applications being accepted between April 2015 and April 2016.
Deadline is 31st May 2015. See Me has set aside the following days for people to make an appointment to discuss proposals, ideas and applications: 18, 25 and 26 March; 22 and 23 April; 13 and 14 May 2015.

More here.

Fidelio Trust: Funding to Support Arts Projects
The Fidelio Trust offers grants of up to £5,000 in support of the Arts, in particular the dramatic and operatic arts, music, speech and dance. The Trustees aim to help individuals and groups such as Colleges, Arts Festivals and other arts organisations who would not be able to carry out a project or activity without financial support. 

Funding is available towards tuition or coaching costs; to participate in external competitions; to be supported for a specially arranged performance; or to receive support for a special publication, musical composition or work of art. 

The next closing date for applications is the 1st June 2015. More here

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Biggest Self Directed Support International event in Glasgow, 2015 - limited free places
‘We chose to climb’ is a two and a half day international gathering in Glasgow 2015, exploring the critical local and global challenges faced in extending greater choice and control to people over their own lives.
  • 16th - 18th March
  • Glasgow
The organisers are releasing limited additional bursary places for individuals who use support, carers,low waged students and staff, smaller organisations, grass root community groups and networks.

Contact to secure a free bursary place.  More details about the event here

Pilton Community Health Project - election hustings (Edinburgh)
Candidates for Edinburgh North and Leith have been invited to attend hustings on Thursday 19th March from 6.30 - 8pm at Royston Wardieburn Community Centre.  A light soup supper will be available from 6 with questions starting from 6.30.  The event will be Chaired by the very able Harry Woodward.

Candidates for Edinburgh West have been invited to attend hustings on Thursday 26th March from 6.30 -8pm at Muirhouse Community Centre.  A light soup supper will be available from 6 with questions starting from 6.30.  The event will be Chaired by the very able Harry Woodward.

Get in touch if you would like some help with childcare or have any questions.  Contact Anita on 0131 551 1671. More here.

Atlantis Leisure study visit - 24 & 25 Mar (Oban)
Do you want to find out how local ownership of leisure facilities delivers a triple whammy of an evolving demand led service, enhanced community wellbeing and the opportunity to generate a sustainable income stream.
Rural Direct's free Project Visit to Atlantis Leisure in Oban is an opportunity to hear about and discuss Atlantis' inspiring story of community spirit in action.
The event will start with a networking evening meal on Tuesday, 24 March. The following morning there will be a tour of the swimming pool and associated leisure halls. We will then facilitate an open networking discussion focussing on Atlantis' 17 year on-going investment programme where you will be able to explore options for funding, availability of support services, revenue generation and beneficial partnerships.
Find out more and book your place here

The Next Piece? Co-producing homelessness services (Glasgow)
Glasgow Homelessness Network and Scotland's Homelessness Involvement & Empowerment Network  are offering this event for anybody interested in exploring what co-production really means, what it might offer us – and whether it could transform how we tackle homelessness in Scotland.
Over time, there’s been many changes in how services are designed and delivered – from something we did to people, then for people and now with people. The ideas behind coproduction build on this change.
  • Tuesday 24th March 2015 10am-3pm
  • Adelaide’s, Bath Street, Glasgow
Come along to:
  • Meet other people working and living with homelessness
  • Enjoy a great lunch and some musical entertainment
To book:
  • Phone 0141 420 7272 / 07834 437 185
  • Email
  • Web
You can download more information here

International Women's Day Event (Glasgow)
mIN will host an outdoor event in partnership Forestry Commission Scotland which aims to bring women together in the great outdoors, celebrate the achievements of women and share learning, skills and enjoyment of activities that support positive health and well-being,
  • 21st March, Rouken Glen Park, 12-4pm
FREE transport will be provided for women and families to the event from Maryhill and the City Centre. Please get in touch with or call 0141 946 9106 to reserve a space

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Conferences and seminars

4th National Co-production Conference 2015
You are invited to register your interest in attending and contributing to this year's national conference: 'It's time to walk the walk - making co-production the way Scotland work'.

Across Scotland people and communities are continuing to work with local services to achieve positive change through co-production. This year’s 4th National Co-production Conference aims to help us bring it all together, learn from each other and plan for the future.

Once again the conference will be brimming over with activities, work sessions, training opportunities, discussions and debates.

This is a free event, with everyone welcome.  In previous years we have been oversubscribed so please register your interest early. 

We are particularly keen for the conference to hear from groups of people with lived experience of co-production. We are happy to support the attendance of local or unfunded groups – get in touch to discuss.

Find out more, register and see how you can contribute here.

Maternal and Early Years National Conference 2015 - Call for Abstracts
The Maternal and Early Years Network is delighted to invite submissions of work to enhance this year’s conference programme. NHS Health Scotland are seeking creative, innovative and challenging practice examples to be presented as parallel sessions or as marketplace stands.

They are looking for examples of work that improve health and wellbeing and reduce the inequalities experienced by the most vulnerable children and families under the theme of The Children and Young People Scotland) Act 2014 (C and YP Act) - the theme of this year’s conference.

They are particularly keen to receive submissions of work undertaken in partnership, including cross agency and cross sector collaborative approaches, to delivering the act in practice.

The deadline for submission is 12 Noon on Thursday 19 March. Full guidance and a submission form, including indicative parallel session themes, can be found on the Maternal and Early Years website here

SWC Hustings Event
The Scottish Women's Convention is organising a Hustings Event in the lead up to the UK General Election on 7 May 2015.
  • Venue: Hilton Glasgow Grosvenor, 1-9 Grosvenor Terrace, Glasgow G12 0TA
  • Date: Friday 10 April 2015 
  • Timings: 10am – 1.30pm
The main political parties in Scotland have been invited to send a representative to the event who will give a short presentation.  You will then be invited to question the representatives on issues which are important to you.

To register your interest in attending please click here to get tickets via Eventbrite or email or Telephone 0141 339 479.

“My Choices: I did it my Way” - 27 Mar (Glasgow)
 This free, half day interactive Conference offers the opportunity to hear directly from disabled people who have participated in GDA’s “My Choices” project and learn how choice and control has directly impacted on their lives. The event will share learning via the launch of “I did it my way” Personal Journeys, an Action Research Report and interactive sessions with “My Choices” participants themselves.
  • When:  Friday 27th March, 9.30 – 12.30 followed by lunch
  • Where: Thistle Hotel, Cambridge Street, Glasgow
Key messages will inspire and inform more creative and effective models of personal support including Self Directed Support. The day will bring together stakeholders and offers a unique opportunity for agencies to hear directly from disabled people so that SDS developments can be driven by learning and experience of what works for them.
The event will be kick-started by a performance of the acclaimed “Purple Poncho Players”- a group of GDA members, who have joined together to share experiences which depict the real lives of disabled people, in a fun, accessible and thought-provoking way.

More here

Health and Loneliness Roadshow 2015 (Various)
The Health and Loneliness Roadshow 2015 offers an exciting new learning opportunity for health and social care professionals in Scotland in the form of lunchtime workshops taking place all over the country throughout the year.

Facilitated by Befriending Networks and funded by the Scottish Government, the Roadshow workshops will offer practitioners, managers and policy makers within health and social care services across Scotland the opportunity to explore the latest research on the impact of loneliness on health and by consequence on health and social care services.  Roadshows are taking place in all 14 health board areas of Scotland. 

More here

Evaluation Support Scotland conference (Edinburgh)
ESS is 10 years old in May 2015. Our Looking back Looking forward conference will reflect on evaluation practice over the last ten years and look at evaluation support in the future.

Thursday 14 May 2015, 9.30am for 10am start until 5pm

The conference will involve:
  • Sharing learning from ESS and our partners
  • Networking amongst third sector, funders, policy-makers
  • Ideas and visioning about the future of evaluation
  • Fun and celebration.
Our conference outcomes are that by the end of the day participants  will:
  • Have learned something about evaluation to take back to their work
  • Have greater enthusiasm for improving their evaluation practice
  • Have a shared perspective on distance travelled in third sector evaluation and a vision for the way forward.
More here

Enhancing wellbeing: inclusive, community collaborative approaches to place making (Dundee)
The symposium will be used as a platform to develop wider public understanding of the contribution that community collaborative approaches to place making can make to well-being. 
  • Date: 15/05/2015   Time: 10.00 – 16.00
  • Location:  Dalhousie Lecture Theatre  (LT1- Ground Floor), University of Dundee
More information here

GCPH Seminar Series 11: Lecture 6 - Experience Shapes the Brain Across the Lifecourse: Epigenetics, Biological Embedding and Cumulative Change (Glasgow)
Professor McEwen will describe how the brain is the central organ of stress and adaptation to stress. The adult, as well as developing brain, possess a remarkable ability for structural and functional plasticity in response to stressful experiences.  Epigenetics is the word used to describe this seamless interaction between genes and environment.  
  • Tuesday 21st April 2015, 4.30 pm – 6.00 pm
  • Trades Hall, 85 Glassford Street, Glasgow G1 1UH
He will outline how stress response differs among individuals and reflects not only major life events but also the conflicts and pressures of daily life. Such stress can lead to a cumulative burden of chronic stress and damage health over the life course, varying with socio-economic status.

More here

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“Integration – Improving health and Social Care in Renfrewshire”  - A Partnership Approach
 Come along to the first of two events to:
  • find out who’s who
  • explore how you can influence the partnership in the future
  • hear what some Third sector Organisations are already doing
  • showcase your organisation
  • input to the content of the next event - ‘an inclusive/engaging consultation process for the Strategic Plan’
  • Community Planning – what’s in it for me? / why I need to know?
  • Thursday 19 March(09:30am – 13:30pm)
  • Abercorn Centre, West College Scotland
    Renfrew Road, Paisley. PA4 4DR 

Glasgow Homeless Network Service User involvement training
GHN offers a range of training sessions. This strand works to improve the quality and quantity of service user involvement across Scotland. We offer training and expert consultancy service to dispel myths about service user involvement, mainstream strategies and inspire professional confidence, ideas and expertise.

More here

Welfare Reform and the impact on Mental Health - Fife Employment Access Trust
These issues will be directly addressed in this free workshop. In the first part of the workshop, through participation in a quiz, the 'common sense' and myths surrounding mental health illness will be exposed. This will incorporate an overview of the symptoms of the prevalent mental health illnesses, their causes and paths to recovery. In the second part, the workshop will consider some of the evidence on how the current welfare reforms are impacting on those suffering from mental health problems in Scotland.

More here

Homelessness: pathways and prevention workshop
IRISS to invite you to our workshop on the 18th March 2015. The event will provide an opportunity to hear from a range of speakers about their work in homelessness prevention, highlighting what they know works and their learning from innovative approaches. Evidence from the Homelessness: pathways and prevention project will be highlighted and next steps explored. There will be interactive sessions for groups to work together to explore key issues and to network. 

More here



Falkirk’s Mental Health Association (FDAMH) Third Age Befriending Scheme Assistant Co-ordinator, Central Falkirk
Thanks to new support from the Big Lottery Fund FDAMH are looking for an Assistant Co-ordinator to join our successful Third Age Befriending Scheme.

You will be responsible for developing and maintaining the telephone befriending service. You will also ensure the smooth running of the project’s social contact and interest groups, as well as assisting the coordinator with running one-to-one befriending.
  • 35 hours per week, £19,000 per annum (3 year fixed term)
With excellent communications skills and a friendly attitude you will be able to form appropriate professional relationships with a wide range of stakeholders. You will enjoy working with older people and have a good knowledge of mental health in relation to adults. Your experience of working in the third sector and supporting volunteers will enable you to ensure the success and continued development of the scheme. Supported by your strong IT skills, you will be confident in gathering information and reporting on the project. You are resourceful and flexible, and are equally able to work successfully on your own initiative or as part of a team. 

Closing date:  Monday 16th March, 2015 at 5pm. More here

Stepping Stones for Families - Board members (Paisley)
Stepping Stones for Families has opportunities for enthusiastic, creative and skilled people to join their Board of Directors:

We are particularly interested in people with expertise in finance/funding; business development and human resource who can devote time to the governance of a medium sized charity recognised for the quality of our services; our innovative approaches to tackling the effects of poverty and isolation and; our willingness to explore new ideas. Partnership working underpins all of our activities.

We are headquartered in Paisley. Our services for children, families and young people are delivered across Glasgow, Ayrshire and Renfrewshire. We are Investors in People; hold Commonwealth Games Legacy Status; Healthy Working Lives award and; are previous recipients of Social Enterprise of the Year Award.

If you are inte rested in joining our Board and would like to speak to our Chief Executive Officer about the work of the Board please telephone Head Office on 0141 849 6333 or download an information sheet from our website –

One Parent Family Scotland - Lone Parent Advisor
OPFS are looking to recruit a Lone Parent Advisor to work alongside single parents in Glasgow to gather information on their experiences across a range of services and to involve parents on what they think can be done to minimise the problems created by welfare reform. This work will then influence the way the city's public services 'serve' single parents.
  • Location: Glasgow
  • Salary: £18,625 - £20,159 (pro rata for 16 hours is £8,514 - £9,215)
  • Hours: 16 hours
Closing date: 18 March 2015. More here

Vacancy: Chance to Thrive Coordinator
Priority Areas of The Church of Scotland are advertising for a Coordinator to run this community engagement initiative working to support local-people-led initiatives with congregations in some of Scotland's poorest communities.

After a successful 3 year pilot involving 8 congregations the opportunity will be given to a further 4 congregations in 2015 and 4 more in 2016 to take part. The coordinator will be involved in further development of Chance to Thrive including recruiting and supporting experienced volunteer mentors who will work long term with the congregations.

For the full job advertisement see Church of Scotland website here. For further information on Chance to Thrive see CUKT website here

Applications for this post to be received by 12 noon on Friday 27 March 2015. 

Healthy Options Lead Exercise Professional (Oban)
An exciting opportunity has arisen within h=the team for a Lead Exercise Professional who will provide a valued specialist service and be empathetic to our clients needs.
  • Location:     Oban, travel throughout Argyll may be required
  • Salary:       approx. £25K, dependent on qualifications
The programme is designed to support a wide range of individuals with varying physical and mental health conditions to enable and support them in changing their lifestyle and to become more active. You will work closely with health professionals across a wide range of disciplines who provide support, mentoring and who understand the importance of physical activity and life style change for their client’s health and well-being.

You will be suitably qualified and be responsible for all aspects of the exercise programme delivery. Depending on qualifications and experience there may be opportunities to manage wider aspects of Healthy Options programmes.

Lorn & Oban Healthy Options is a dynamic community health initiative working in collaboration with health professionals. This is a unique opportunity to help this exciting and successful programme continue and develop to meet the needs of the population of Oban and Argyll. 

More here

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Food Aid Scotland Website Launched
The website has been developed to help support groups and organisations in Scotland which are providing emergency food aid – this can include food parcels, fresh food or hot meals. 

More here

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