Our work aims to improve the mental health and well-being of children and young people by enabling them to feel included at school. Being accepted by your peer group is a vital part of growing up and being kitted out with a new school uniform helps support young people to concentrate on their education, as opposed to their appearance. Feedback from referrals has indicated that children feel proud and excited by their new uniform and parents/carers are less stressed.
The need for our service is growing. In the year to 2019 - 2020 we received 840 referrals, which is continuing to increase. We anticipate further demand for our service during the continued impact of COVID-19 on people’s employment and finances. We therefore appeal for more donations to meet this demand - please see our website for more information on how to donate.
We operate on a referral basis and will accept a referral from any professional organisation, such as schools, social work, health visitors or advice based organisation.
For further information about our service or to find out how you can volunteer and support our work, please contact Project Manager Collette Moran – email@example.com or 07578811398
Providing free face to face money advice and additional support to people across our communities. The service offers home visits and focuses on delivering intensive support aimed at building resilience, enabling people to take control of their finances.
Offering affordable talk therapy options to anyone aged over 18 in West Lothian, the service gives people the opportunity to explore and talk about some of lifes issues in a safe, caring, confidential and non-judgemental space. Some of the issues that we can offer support with include: anxiety, stress, depression, abuse, relationship issues, family conflict, self esteem, bullying, bereavement or anger issues.
Over the past year we have been working in partnership with other organisations to deliver practically focused bereavement support courses. We plan on developing further group courses over the coming year.
The Bridge relies on its volunteers to provide the variety of support that is offered locally. We have a number of different opportunities available and would encourage you to look at our website for further information https://bridgecommunityproject.org.uk/rebuildhope/.
"The Bridge is a safe and welcoming space. I enjoy being part of a friendly team and feel proud being able to volunteer as a counsellor within this supportive environment."
HcL Transport runs supported community transport services in West Lothian. We provide door-through-door services for people with limited mobility who are unable to use ordinary buses and/or suffering a degree of social exclusion due to age, disability, additional support needs, health issues (long or short term) and geographic remoteness. We have been providing these services for 37 years across Edinburgh and the Lothians.
The drivers not only help passengers on and off the bus, but help them from inside their home onto the vehicle. On the return they support them into their home and take their shopping inside their home. Each bus can carry two wheelchair passengers in their wheelchairs. All buses are fitted with wheelchair lifts at the rear.
Our services are vital to so many people. It allows them independence, enables them to get out of their home, meet people, reducing isolation and improving wellbeing while contributing to a sense of community.
On the bus, people who would not know each other without this service, have a great comradery, they look out for each other and keep in touch out with the Dial-A services.
The difference our service makes is even more apparent now during this pandemic, where so many of our passengers are now in isolation. We are trying to support them in different ways, in partnership with other local organisations and charities, to ensure they have food delivered and can attend urgent medical appointments.
Helping Matters is a volunteer led project run by Macmillan Cancer Support. Our volunteers can provide practical assistance such as essential shopping, light housework, gardening or driving a patient to an appointment or community group.
Emotional support is extremely valuable, and our volunteers can provide companionship by chatting face to face or over the phone. Befriending support is often provided which may just involve being a listening ear or having a chat about topics other than cancer.
Volunteering with Helping Matters is such a rewarding way to offer practical and emotional support to those who need it, making a big difference to people’s lives. Macmillan volunteer Cath tells us, “I enjoy seeing people get their confidence back. It means a lot to me that I’ve helped someone through such a difficult time.”
All of our volunteers undertake a full induction programme, including Disclosure Check (PVG). All out of pocket expenses are also reimbursed. Helping Matters Volunteers are offered access to a free training programme throughout the year delivered by Macmillan professionals.
During the Coronavirus crisis Helping Matters are currently only offering telephone befriending. We are still actively recruiting new volunteers, if you think that you can give someone a friendly call then please contact Kathryn Speirs on:
Phone: 07801 307 086
Carers of West Lothian is a well-established voluntary organisation offering a range of services that have been developed specifically to meet the needs of carers and their families. It was started in 1990 by a small group of people, themselves carers, who recognised carers’ needs for information and support.
Today, Carers of West Lothian offers a range of services that have been developed specifically to meet the needs of carers from age 8 upwards. In 2018 our service expanded to include support for adults with a physical or learning disability.
The support we offer is:
· One to one support or someone to talk to – face to face, over the telephone or via email/social media
· Information on rights
· Benefits advice clinics by appt only.
· Power of Attorney/guardianship clinics appt. only
· Information on community support services
· Signposting and referrals to other services
· Training and workshops
· Peer support groups
· Short break funding
In order to deliver our service, we are keen to expand our team of volunteers. Without volunteer support, we would not be able to support as many people and they are a vital part of our team. All volunteers receive induction and ongoing training relevant to their role and will always be supported by a member of staff.
We are looking for young carer volunteers, peer support volunteers and volunteers to help us with fundraising. If you would like more information please see our website or call 01506 448000 to speak to one of our team.
The West Lothian Foodbank was started by Whitburn Pentecostal Church in November 2012 with a handful of volunteers and served 20 clients from one combined storage point and distribution centre. Seven years later the foodbank has provided over 274,851 meals to 30,539 people in West Lothian. We have eleven distribution centres throughout West Lothian, a charity shop in Whitburn and a warehouse and offices in Livingston. The charity is manned by 250 volunteers, 4 full-time staff and two part-time staff. We work alongside 150 partner referral agencies such as schools, charities, churches, the police and local authority agencies.
For the past seven years, we have provided three days of emergency food to people in crisis who have been referred to us by our partners. This has been a vital service to people in great need. Our aim in the years ahead is to expand our service to include initiatives designed to help people out of poverty. Currently, 23% of people in West Lothian are living in poverty and the demand for our service is increasing year on year. This needs to change and we are committed to bringing that number down by helping people to avoid the need to use a foodbank.
Please consider joining our team of volunteers or follow us on social media:
Facebook: West Lothian Foodbank
Facebook: West Lothian Foodbank Charity Shop Whitburn
Gig Buddies is a project that pairs people with a learning disability to like-minded volunteers to go to events together. This could be music, theatre, sport… it’s whatever your ‘gig’ is! Buddies then meet once or twice a month to get out and enjoy their shared interest together.
Gig Buddies is all about building friendships in a relaxed, natural and social way. It’s through building friendships and connections with one another that we aim to tackle social isolation and social stigma towards people with a learning disability.
Since starting in West Lothian in 2017, Gig Buddies has enabled its members to get out to a range of public and locally run events in Livingston, Bathgate and Linlithgow. This includes live music, gigs, open mic and movie nights.
Gig Buddies is always looking to grow and develop in West Lothian. The project offers an engaging and relaxed volunteering opportunity, as well as the chance to get out to lots of live events. All new volunteers also receive an induction as well as ongoing support throughout their time with the project. No previous volunteering or support experience is required.
We have lots of events coming up, many of which are open to the public, so come along and get involved! To find out more about us, simply go to our Volunteering Opportunity online via VSGWL or head to our Facebook page by searching for ‘Gig Buddies West Lothian’.
Voluntary Sector Gateway West Lothian is a Registered Company in Scotland No. SC244154 and Registered Scottish Charity No. SC027612.
Registered Office: 20-22 King Street, Bathgate, EH48 1AX
Registered Office: 20-22 King Street, Bathgate, EH48 1AX