Chief Executive, Emily Stokes
Dinner with the Stars update
Chamber member of the week
Updates and developments
New Charity Business Partnership
Birchwood Highland and occupational health service provider Alert Health have announced a formal charity business partnership to help raise awareness of mental health in the workplace.
As of April 2018, the year-long partnership will see both organisations collaborating to help fulfil each other’s strategic aims and objectives, including working with local companies to help address the stigma and management of mental ill health within Highland workplaces.
Alert Health’s clinicians and administrators, based in Inverness, work with businesses across Highlands & Islands and Moray to support all health matters relating to the workforce. In seeking out a new charity business partner as part of their corporate social responsibility agenda, Birchwood Highland seemed the natural choice and aligned with Alert Health’s commitment to protect, improve and promote physical and mental wellbeing in the workplace.
We look forward to working alongside Amy and her team over the coming year!
Read the full press release here.
Dinner with the Stars
Year of Young People
If you're aged 16-25, or if you started working for Birchwood Highland whilst you were in this age bracket, we'd love to hear from you at the next Young People's Forum on Wednesday 9th May between 11am - 2pm at Head Office.
For more information on the Young People's Forum, please contact Head Office.
Ben Nevis Challenge - August 2018
Did you know that it's nearly 4 years since the Ben Nevis Challenge?! We're keen to do it again in 2018, and exploring potential dates at the moment. If you think it's something you might be interested in, please contact Màiri at Head Office.
Highland Migrant and Refugee Advocacy
The latest from HiMRA
60 Second Interview
Quick fire questions
Name: Karen Mackay
Job Title: Charity Shop Manager
Joined Birchwood Highland: Feburary 2018
Based at: 70 High Street, Invergordon
Q. What was your previous role?
A. I've worked in support for over 10 years but most recently I was working at the Post Office in Invergordon. I also have previous retail experience, having been the manager at Farmfoods in Invergordon.
Q. Are you originally from the Highlands?
A. No, I'm originally from Glasgow although I moved here 42 years ago - I think I'm classed as a local now!
Q. If you were stuck in a lift, who would you like to be stuck with?
A. A lift engineer! I wouldn't like to be the other person who is stuck with me because I'm really claustrophobic.
Q. What’s your favourite song from the 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s, 00s and 10s?
60s - Hey Jude - The Beatles
70s - Sailing - Rod Stewart
80s - I Don't Like Mondays - The Boomtown Rats
90s - Don't Look Back in Anger - Oasis
00s - Get the Party Started - Pink
10s - Dancing On My Own - Callum Scott
The latest from Birchwood Highland's services
Residents at the Recovery Centre have been enjoying the latest round of nature walks, despite the chilly weather! Photos above are from the duck pond at Craig Dunain and from the Caledonian Canal.
Warm wishes to James in Easter Ross who turned 65 this month and celebrated with a cake and some well deserved presents! Happy Birthday, James, we hope you have a great year.
Linda Birnie, Training and Development Manager, has been busy delivering Toolbox Talks across the Highlands as well as some additional training for DWP in Inverness and Invergordon.
Top: The Morrison Construction site team at Ardross engaging in their Toolbox Talk session.
Below: A team of solicitors from Innes & Mackay at a more in-depth 2 hour 'Introduction to Mental Health' Toolbox Talk.
Read All About It!
Birchwood Highland in the media
Mental health charity marks decade of work
Press & Journal
New project to prevent loneliness in migrants
Dinner with the Stars
Press & Journal
Fundraising // Activities // Workshops
Morrison Construction Quiz Night
Spice Masterclass with Hardeep Singh Kohli
Stir your senses at this spice masterclass at the Royal Highland Hotel.
In conversation with spice maestro Hardeep Singh Kohli, you can touch, taste and smell your way through the principles of cooking with Indian herbs and spices, and delve into new depths of flavour.
Tickets £25pp and will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.
Private Dining Experience with Hardeep Singh Kohli
Get up close and personal with Hardeep Singh Kohli (and just 15 other foodies!) at this intimate dining experience. Includes 7 course menu with wine, at a top-secret location in a Highland home.
Tickets £135pp, including return transport from Inverness city centre.
The Government has agreed a six-month extension of the workplace childcare voucher system so the scheme will NOT be closing in April as expected. Following a Commons debate, Damian Hinds, the Education Secretary, said: “I have heard the concerns raised about this, and about the timing, and I can confirm we will be able to keep the voucher scheme open for a further six months to new entrants following representations that she (referring to DUP MP Emma Pengelly) has made.”
Since it was announced that the childcare voucher scheme would be closing, there has been much debate over the merits of the scheme in comparison to the replacement scheme, Tax Free Childcare. Many working parents, particularly those with school age children, and those who do not satisfy the Government’s criteria over working hours and earnings for Tax Free Childcare, have argued that childcare vouchers are a far more beneficial and flexible option to help with childcare costs. We therefore see the delay to the scheme closure as a positive development, and one that will keep options open for parents who pay for childcare in the coming months.
To review all options regarding Government help with childcare costs please visit:
Staff are reminded to familiarise themselves with the most recent policies approved by the Board:
- Mobile Phone Policy
- Data Protection
- Duty of Candour
The new policy list has also been reviewed and you can view it here.
Starters and Leavers
A warm welcome to those who've recently joined us:
Ben Miller, Support Worker – CSS
Helen Heath, Relief Support Worker – BHRC
Owen Hope, Relief Support Worker – BHRC
Karen Mackay – Shop Manager
Chloe George, Support Worker – ERSS
And a fond farewell to the following:
Everyday Challenges (Highland Autism Support) – 4th April
Basic Alcohol and Drugs Awareness Training – 19th April
Understanding Autism – 24th April
Social Stories (Highland Autism Support) – 25th April
Further details on all training can be found on the Training Calendar on SharePoint.