Carers of East Lothian

Charity registered in Scotland SC027000

Carers of East Lothian supports adults in East Lothian who are looking after a family member or friend who is ill, disabled or frail. We help carers to get information and services to help their individual caring role, enhance their own well-being and strengthen their collective voice to improve services.

Current opportunities

Responsibilities will include: Help organising monthly carer support groups, including booking venues and inviting attendees, setting up and clearing down. In the case of an online group, this would involve providing administrative support via Zoom. Attending groups along with a Carer Support Worker to help facilitate, including meeting and greeting, provision of refreshments and promoting discussion and peer support.

CoEL are seeking to recruit volunteers to help organise and facilitate the range of events, training and workshops we offer to carers throughout the year. This programme of events and training aims to increase carer's confidence in their caring role, to encourage engagement in peer support, and to provide an opportunity to take part in enjoyable activities for some welcome respite. With the help of volunteers we hope to expand our reach and the range of events and workshops we can provide. Volunteers will help to organise and facilitate events and training for carers across the year, with a particular focus on activities over Carers Week.

Creative wellbeing volunteers should have a creative skill of their own and an understanding of how engaging with creativity can support positive wellbeing and reduce stress. They will be keen to share their creative skill with others. The Volunteer and Training Coordinator at Carers of East Lothian will support them by organising an opportunity to deliver a workshop introducing carers to the skill. A wide variety of skills could be introduced to carers, but could include: art, dance, drama, cooking, baking, yoga, writing, needlework, photography, pottery, knitting, music, holistic therapies, beauty. Carers of East Lothian will support the volunteer to identify a suitable venue, source resources, provide administrative support, advertise and promote the session, conduct risk assessments and support the facilitation of the session. Volunteers could provide a one of session, but it may be more suitable to run multiple sessions. If interest is high, volunteers may be invited to run further sessions in the future.

Volunteer Befrienders will provide weekly telephone support to unpaid adult carers in East Lothian. Befrienders will offer companionship through conversation. All befrienders will be offered a thorough training and support programme by CoEL and a dedicated supervisor, as well as opportunities to connect and socialise with other volunteers. Telephone befrienders should have some lived experience/ understanding of caring themselves. This can be their own experience, or it can be a developed understanding and empathy for those in a caring situation, perhaps because of a close family link. The aim of the befriending work is to support carers who may feel isolated, disconnected or in need of regular communication with someone who understands what they are going through. The carers that wish to participate in befriending will already be engaged with CoEL and the organisation will have a good understanding of their caring situation. Volunteer befrienders will be carefully matched with a carer based on their personal interests and circumstances with the aim of developing a fruitful relationship. There is the potential for volunteers to befriend more than one carer.