Your Kirkwall

Over the next 8 months, Orkney Islands Council will be preparing a new plan for Kirkwall. Rather than do it alone, it wants to make sure the plan is what the community wants.

Local people might have ideas they’d like to see happen – or you might even have a project you want to do yourself.

Your Kirkwall is a series of community conversations and events where people are encouraged to come together to discuss and share ideas for the future of Kirkwall over the next 10-20 years – to help improve Kirkwall as a place to live, work and visit. The project aims to involve residents, schools, community groups, local businesses, voluntary organisations, the council, and others. It will feed into a Community Action Plan and guide the Council’s future planning, design and transport policies for Kirkwall. Your Kirkwall is a community led exercise delivered by a community-focused charity called PAS. PAS is working with Orkney Islands Council to facilitate this process and ensure that the future vision for Kirkwall is an inclusive one.

Our first community event will take place on 22nd and 23rd of November 2017 in Kirkwall and St Ola Community Centre, Broad Street (all welcome – please spread the word!).

To help us plan for this event, it would be helpful if you could complete this short survey. If you would prefer to complete a paper copy, please return it to the reception desk at Customer Services One Stop Shop, Council Offices.

For further information please visit contact Julia at PAS at or Michael Harvey at Orkney Islands Council at (Tel: 01856 873535). You can find out more on the project’s Facebook and Twitter pages (@yourkirkwall). The project website is here:

New ICO helpline for GDPR

The Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) has launched a dedicated advice line to help small organisations prepare for the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) - just call 0303 123 1113 and select Option 4.

More information can be found on the ICO website

.Preparing for the GDPR – 12 steps updated available here

New guide from ACAS, Promoting Positive Mental health in the Workplace.

Mental health in the workplace

The Government's Department of Health advises that one in four of us will experience mental ill health at some point in our lives. It is therefore important that employers and their staff take steps to promote positive mental health and support those experiencing mental ill health.

What is mental health?

Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices. Mental ill health can range from feeling 'a bit down' to common disorders such as anxiety and depression to more severe and far less common conditions such as bipolar disorder or schizophrenia. Most people's mental health will not just be continuously good. Usually it will rise and fall depending on pressures and/or experiences in their life. A person may therefore feel in good mental health generally but also experience stress or anxiety from time to time.

To help employers and their managers in this area Acas currently have guidance for employers and managers on:

• Promoting positive mental health in the workplace: outlining a step by step approach to improve the mental health of staff and provide support processes for staff that experience mental ill health

• Managing staff experiencing mental ill health: providing guidance for a manager who thinks a team may be experiencing mental ill health. It includes information on spotting the signs that a team member may be experiencing mental ill health, tips on how to approach talking to them about their mental health and how to support them in their recovery

• Dealing with stress in the workplace: explains the causes of work-related stress and how to approach reducing this in your workplace. It also provides guidance on spotting a team member that may be experiencing stress, how to approach talking to them and support them

• Managing anxiety in the workplace: outlines what anxiety is and what signs may indicate a team member is experiencing anxiety.

Full information is available here

Funding for 100 projects across Scotland has been granted by National Lottery Awards for All Scotland

Lismore Community Trust is amongst the 100 groups across Scotland who learned this week that they will share £677,936 of National Lottery cash.

The funding comes from National Lottery Awards for All Scotland which makes grants from £300 to £10,000 with funds raised by the lottery.

Thanks to an award of £8,960, the community trust will transform two phone boxes on each end of the island into information kiosks. Chair Sebastian Tombs said: “Transforming our two red telephone kiosks into welcoming information hubs at the arrival points on the island will be a real boost for us. Meanwhile in Falkirk, exciting plans are also afoot as the Communities Along the Carron Association picked up £10,000 to buy two tricycle rickshaws that will get people in local care homes out and about enjoying cycle rides. Project coordinator Christine Bell said: “We were absolutely delighted to be awarded this money which will help build our fleet of trishaws for our Cycling Without Age Falkirk project. The trishaws will visit local care homes on a daily basis ridden by volunteers who take elderly people out to enjoy fresh air, get the wind in their hair and enjoy a sense of fun and freedom.” A National Lottery Awards for All spokesperson said: “This funding will help a range of arts, sports and community groups from across Scotland to bring their projects ideas to life.

If you, and your local community group, would like to join them in celebrating a National Lottery award, you can find out how to apply by visiting our website.”

E-Learning Opportunity: Essentials of Youth Policy

The Council of Europe and the European Commission in the field of Youth have provided a free online 6 week course for youth workers, youth leaders, youth researchers and youth policy makers. 

By the end of the course, learners will:

  • Understand the “essentials” of youth policy (concepts and definitions, scope, objectives, actors, history, European and national levels).
  • Become aware of the relevance of the key elements for youth policy (cross-sectoral, evidence -based, participation, inclusion, youth work).
  • Understand how to build a framework for youth policy (identifying key issues, priority areas and themes).
  • Understand the major steps for youth policy development, implementation and delivery, and evaluation.
  • Reflect on the future of youth policy and their own future engagement in youth policy.
  • Be ready to take steps for further involvement in youth policy.

Register now.

Course start date is 30 October 2017. 

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