Carers Focus Newsletter: December 2020

Dear everyone,

We hope you and your loved ones are doing safe and well. We are still primarily working from home, continuing to support carers over the telephone and email. You can always reach us on our main number: 0131 322 8480. If no one is in the office, you can leave a message and someone will return your call. We understand that these are particularly difficult times for carers — please get in touch if we can help you with something, or just to say hello!

For General Enquiries or to make a Referral, please email
For Information/Resources, or if you have a query about our Peer Support Service, please email Information & Resource Worker,

Carers Forum Update

Many thanks to all who came to our last Carers Forums, which were held online through Zoom on 20 August and 19 November. A big thank you to Mr Gordon Dodds (Planning & Commissioning Officer for Mental Health) as well, who came to seek carers’ views about support at home and supported accommodation. Our next Forum will take place in February 2021 (date TBA). For more information about our Carers Forums you can visit our Carers Forum page on our website or email


Edinburgh Carers Council AGM — Thursday, 21 January 2021

You are invited to our Annual General Meeting, which will be online through Zoom on Thursday, 21 January 2021 from 11am-12pm. Anyone who has an interest in our work from this past year is welcome to attend. Feel free to bring along your lunch as we discuss ECC business. Please email and we will send you the Zoom invitation closer to the time.


Life Changes Trust: Caring for the Carer

Life Changes Trust have launched a new funding stream, ‘Caring for the Carer’. The fund is open to carers of people living with dementia (who are resident of Scotland) and can offer funding of up to £1,000. People can use the money to help them cope with social distancing and isolation and to improve their physical and emotional health and wellbeing. The deadline for applications is Friday, 22 January 2021. To read more and download the application form you can visit the Life Changes Trust website, here. If you have any questions, you can get in touch with them by phoning 0141 212 9600 or emailing


Peer Support for Carers & Relatives

Our peer support service is open for referrals. We have trained volunteer peer support workers available who are all carers or former carers themselves. Engaging in peer support is an opportunity to talk about your experiences, hear from a peer who has been through a similar difficult situation, ask questions and work through feelings. Peer support volunteers will not lecture you, give advice or tell you what to do; they’re here to listen to you, and can provide practical and emotional support. If you care for someone who has mental health difficulties we can match you with one of our trained volunteers. For more information or to refer yourself (or someone else) to this service, please email You can also visit our website for more information.

Are you a carer or former carer who would like to help others?

We’re looking for volunteers for both our peer support service and our Board of Trustees.

Peer work volunteers utilise their own lived experience of caring to help others who may be going through similar difficult circumstances. Peer volunteers would work one-to-one with a carer, providing regular support (currently over the telephone) for a maximum period of six months.

Our Board of Trustees are an integral part to the running of our organisation. Trustees meet the last Monday of each month to look at Trustee business, and have an Annual General Meeting. You don’t need to necessarily have caring experience for this role, although having an interest in unpaid carers and mental health is required.

If you’d like to learn more about either of these roles, we’d love to hear from you! Please get in touch by emailing or phoning us on 0131 322 8480.


Fundraising Appeal 2020

Covid-19 has affected everyone in some way, and this includes small charities like us. Normally during this time of year, we would be having a fundraising event like the raffle that took place last November during our AGM. Unfortunately, due to restrictions an event like this just won’t be possible this year. Instead, we’re launching an online appeal for funds.

Donating to Edinburgh Carers Council would mean that you are helping unpaid carers & relatives of people with mental health difficulties to receive the important information and advocacy support they need. Funds raised would also be used to continue running the volunteer-led peer support service, and to host future events when it becomes safe again to do so.

Peer support has shown itself to be vital during the lockdown and restrictions during this last year. People in their caring roles have experienced extremes of isolation and loneliness at not being able to see family and a lack of respite and social support.

If you are able to donate, please visit our fundraising page:

You can also support us when you shop on AmazonSmile :) AmazonSmile has all the same prices as Amazon with the added bonus that AmazonSmile will donate a portion of the purchase to your selected charity. (Eligible purchases include products marked "Eligible for donation" on their product detail pages). Click here to support ECC while you shop!


Thank you for your support

We hope you enjoy the holidays! Stay safe & take care. Best wishes from all of us here at Edinburgh Carers Council.