Health and social care funding boost for voluntary organisations

More older people in Edinburgh will be able to heat their homes this winter after nearly £553,000 was handed out to voluntary organisations this week in the capital.

The Innovation Fund is an extra cash injection being distributed as part of the Change Fund. This is a £70m Scottish Government fund allocated to health and social care organisations across the country for older people's services, of which over £6m is for Edinburgh.

One of the organisations to benefit from the funding is Changeworks who received £38,000. They run the Heat Heroes project which helps older people in the city heat their homes.

Other voluntary organisations to benefit from the Change Fund money include: Bethany Christian Trust (£45,000), Minority Ethnic Carers of Older People Project (£35,000) and Action on Depression (£20,000).

The Edinburgh Voluntary Organisations Council (EVOC) was a key partner together with the Council and NHS Lothian in setting up the processes for the fund distribution.  

Councillor Paul Edie, Health and Social Care Leader for the City of Edinburgh Council, said: "With EVOC taking the lead to process the fund it's great that our Health and Social Care department and NHS Lothian have been able to distribute this money to some very worthwhile projects.

"The Changeworks money is particularly relevant at this time of year when older people are worrying about paying their bills and struggling to heat their homes.

"I am sure these extra funds will make a huge difference to the day to day lives of hundreds of people in Edinburgh."

Sam Mills, Head of Projects, Changeworks, said: "We are delighted to receive funding for our Heat Heroes project! Almost half of all pensioners in Edinburgh cannot afford to keep their home warm, presenting a real health risk.

"Our Heat Heroes volunteers will support older people in the city aged 65 and over to make their homes as affordably warm as possible. Working with local partners Pilmeny Development Project, Care and Repair and LifeCare Edinburgh our volunteers will support older people to develop the skills and confidence to use their heating and to better afford their electricity and gas bills.

"With rising energy prices and cold winters there has never been a better time for Heat Heroes volunteers to help prevent older people living in cold, damp homes."

Ella Simpson, Director of the Edinburgh Voluntary Organisations Council, welcomed the Change Fund money.
She said: "This is a direct investment for services in local people's communities. The voluntary sector in Edinburgh is absolutely key to delivering quality support to older people living in their own homes and we are delighted that City of Edinburgh Council and NHS Lothian recognise this. The Innovation Fund is an excellent example of the potential of partnership working".

A full list of voluntary organisations receiving the Innovation Fund money is listed below.

Organisation Project Name Amount awarded
Edinburgh Leisure Falls Prevention and Management Service  £50,000
LGBT Centre for Health and Wellbeing LGBT Age Capacity Building Project  £48,000
Bethany Christian Trust Passing the Baton for Older People  £45,000
Volunteer Centre Edinburgh Increasing Volunteering Capacity Through Partnership  £45,000
Changeworks Heat Heroes  £38,247
Minority Ethnic Carers of Older People Project (MECOPP) BME Older People & Carers Hospital Discharge Support Service  £35,295
West Edinburgh Timebank Time for Life  £35,233
Libertus Volunteering - A Good Idea  £30,000
Here's A Hand Here's A Hand £25,000
Care for Carers/Support In Mind Scotland Still Caring £23,972
Citizens' Advice Edinburgh Volunteering Development £22,560
Bield Housing Association Canalside Connections £19,968
Action on Depression Enabling Older People in Edinburgh Opportunities to Enjoy Enhanced Emotional Well-being £19,962
Saheliya Senior Saheliya £19,226
Thistle Foundation Lifestyle Management for Older Adults £19,166
Queensferry Care Community Volunteering Project/Almond Club £32,070
Caring in Craigmillar Older Men's Outreach £15,408
Lothian Centre for Inclusive Living (LCIL) Older Disabled People Project £14,344
Pilmeny Development Project Leith Timebank Pilot Project £14,149

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