Month: March 2015

Living & Dying With Dementia In Scotland

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Marie Curie


“An ageing population and the resulting projected growth in dementia will pose a particular set of challenges to the health and social care system in Scotland over the coming decades. In order to meet these challenges we need to start removing the barriers which currently prevent people with dementia from accessing high quality end of life care.”

This is the conclusion of a far reaching report by Marie Curie Cancer Care published in February. Stonehaven is part of a pilot in Aberdeenshire, to help the  town become a dementia friendly community.

“A Dementia friendly community is a community where businesses, shops, services, facilities and groups are welcoming, supportive and inclusive for people with dementia and their carers.”

Want to know more, contact Moira Watson on 07879 551831.

To read the full report from Marie Curie Cancer Care, click here.

“Alone We Can Do So Little, Together We Can Do So Much.”

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Community Councils have been around for 42 years and they are statutory bodies representing the most local tier of representation in Scotland. There are 1,200 community councils in Scotland with an estimated 12,000 councillors.

Want to know more?

Read on to find out why Councillor Bill Howatson thinks we should all consider representing our communities. Read the rest of this entry »

Are You A Shedder?….

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Mens ShedThe Portlethen and District Men’s Shed is a new Scottish charity created to promote general wellbeing, continued life-long and life-wide learning and healthy lifestyles for retired men and men ‘with time on their hands’ who are looking to use this time constructively and enjoyably. They plan to do this by setting up a location or “Shed” where the men can go to engage in creative, enjoyable activities and meet and chat with other men. Various local government, NHS health, and volunteer groups in the community have identified a strong need for something like this. The Men’s Shed model has proven successful in Australia where there are over 1,000 in existence, New Zealand, Ireland, England and now Scotland. The first shed set up in Westhill, Aberdeenshire in 2013 has had over five thousand visits in a 18 month period with some of those men coming from Portlethen.
Read the rest of this entry »

KeyStone Award

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Do you run a village hall or community building?

Then you may be interested in KeyStone – an award  scheme that recognises the good work that you do and assists you in addressing any gaps in your current operation.

The KeyStone Award is a quality award scheme designed to give information, support and encouragement to people who manage village halls and community buildings.  It will help you make sense of legislation and regulation, put systems in place to keep things running smoothly and allow you to concentrate on providing the best facilities possible.

KeyStone combines a guide to best practice with comprehensive information resources all supported by the encouragement and assistance of a mentor.  It’s also a management tool that can be used to help you keep files, documents and information organised.   The KeyStone Award provides recognition that you are doing things right, and can be used for promotion and publicity and as evidence of good practice.

Completing the KeyStone Award will help you to:

  • be confident that you’re doing things right
  • comply with legislation and regulation
  • organise your files, documents and information to make life easier for you and future committees
  • understand  where to go for help
  • promote and publicise your organisation and provide evidence of good practice
  • secure a long term future for your facility
  • engage with your community and other local organisations
  • provide evidence to potential funders that you are a well run organisation

Some of the staff in Aberdeenshire Voluntary Action have currently undergone training in Mentoring organisations through the KeyStone process and so if you are interested in discussing this further or considering the KeyStone award scheme then contact:

Ed Garrett –          Tel: 01569 668055

Thinking of becoming a foster carer?

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BNarnardo By choosing to become a foster carer you can make a huge difference to a child’s life – and yours.

The UK’s leading children’s charity, Barnardo’s believes that by providing the right help, committed support, and belief, even the most vulnerable children can turn their lives around.

If this makes you wonder if fostering is right for you, get in touch with Barnardo’s. They are urgently looking to recruit an extra 850 foster carers in Scotland to tackle the “critical” shortfall which leaves one in three children in care having to move homes more than twice a year. Read the rest of this entry »

There’s no ward like home.

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The shape of Scottish society is changing. People are living longer, healthier lives and as the needs of our society change, so too must the nature and form of our public services. HSCI1

New legislation, in the form of the Public Bodies (Joint Working) (Scotland) Act 2014, came into force on 1 April 2014. The Act requires Health Boards and Local Authorities to integrate their health and social care services.

Local teams and professionals across health and social care will work together to deliver quality, sustainable care and services resulting in improved outcomes for the people and their families who use these services.

Those individuals with long-term conditions and disabilities, many of whom are older people, will get the joined-up and seamless support and care that they need to live safely and independently in their own homes for as long as possible.

So, that’s the background, but what will it mean to you & I?  HSCI Read the rest of this entry »

UK Armed Forces Day Grant

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Since 2009, Armed Forces Day has been marked annually with events large and small throughout the UK.

In support of this event, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) is providing funding to help organisations and individuals in the UK host an Armed Forces Day event this summer.

Last year, events took place in all parts of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. They included Armed Forces Day tea parties, parades, big band concerts, civil war military re-enactments and live and static demonstrations. Her Royal Highnesses The Princess Royal attended the national event, taking the salute on behalf of The Queen, as a military contingent of more than 400 Service personnel marched from the Esplanade of Stirling Castle.

Local councils, organisations, schools, ex-service organisations and individuals in the UK are eligible to apply for funding of a maximum £10,000 (providing the MoD accounts for no more that 50% of the project costs).

Events must occur a week either side of the National Armed Forces Day. This year the celebrations will fall on Saturday 27 June 2015, when a major national event will be held in Guildford, Surrey.

The deadline for applications is 27 March 2015.

Click to view further information about this newsflash

Dementia Friends Scotland

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Alzheimer Scotland and Dementia Friends

Dementia Friends is a Social Action Movement.

Dementia Friends is all about raising awareness and reducing the stigma

A Dementia Friends session is free and will last around an hour. It is interactive and informative.

The five key messages you should know about dementia which are :-

Dementia is not a natural part of ageing

Dementia is caused by diseases of the brain

Dementia is not just about losing your memory

It is possible to live well with Dementia

There’s more to the person than the dementia

These will be brought to life through a number of activities. At the end of the session you will be asked to sign up as a Dementia Friend. You will be given a badge to wear and a certificate. We will then be asking you to state a Call to Action which can be very simple, something as simple as helping the person who appears to be lost or being patient in the supermarket queue when a person is having difficulty.   As a Dementia Friend we ask that you continue to talk about Dementia with family, friends and colleagues which will continue to raise awareness in the community thus creating a dementia friendly community.

For more information or to sign up for a session, please contact

Kirsteen Heneghan, Dementia Advisor, Alzheimer Scotland

Tel: 01467 530512 or mob: 07879 551831 or

Moira Watson Development Worker Dementia Friendly Communities

Mobile Number 07576305750

NEXT PUBLIC SESSION will be in Stonehaven on

Wednesday 18th of March at 11am Outside Hall Stonehaven Community Centre Bath Street

Please contact Kirsteen or Moira if you want to take part in one of the sessions.

Getting Into Health & Social Care.

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Princes trustIf you are 16-25, unemployed and interested in a career in care, join the free training programme with the Princes Trust, where you can:

  •  Have the chance to gain qualifications such as food hygiene, emergency  first aid or moving and handling
  •  Receive training in topics relevant to the sector, including dementia, health and safety
  • Improve your teamwork and communication skills and boost your         confidence, interview skills and CV
  • Receive six month’s support after the programme to help you find a job


This programme runs from the 23rd March until the 17th April 2015 in Aberdeen.


For more information contact Lynne Martin on 01224 289729 / 07787 518392 or email or visit


Branching Out

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Fancy trying something different……?    bushcraft1

That’s exactly what Branching Out is offering adults who use mental health services in Scotland. Over a twelve week period course members can try their hand at tai chi, bushcraft, willow art or photography to name but a few.

On completing the course, individuals receive certificates of completion, tool handling and, where applicable, the John Muir Trust Award.

The programme is currently available in nine NHS board areas, but hopes to expand into Aberdeenshire.

Like the sound of it, let us know and we’ll pass it on.



Meet Local Community Substance Misuse Worker – Beverley Cattanach

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When we asked Beverley Cattanach, a Community Substance Misuse Worker in the Kincardine & Mearns area, if she could introduce herself to you all on the blog she said,

 “Oh wow have pondered over this for a while and really wasn’t sure what to write that others would find interesting!”

Now, we know that she’s a vibrant and inspiring character (who is rarely seen without a wopping touch of pink in her outfit) and we wanted to introduce you to someone this month who tied together February’s Alcohol & Drug theme and March’s focus on Wellbeing , so we gave her a few questions to get her started.  Read the rest of this entry »