Caraidean Uibhist funding

A Western Isles charity which is said to be “making a difference” to the lives of vulnerable members of the community has been given a “much appreciated” funding boost.

Caraidean Uibhist (Uist Befriending Service) has been awarded £6,000 by the Lloyds TSB Foundation for Scotland.

Sheena Stewart, the charity’s co-ordinator, said she was “absolutely delighted” to learn of the award and added: “It means a lot to us, particularly as we are struggling in the current economic climate to secure the funding we need to continue with the vital work we do in the community.”

Caraidean Uibhist provides support through one-to-one, group and telephone befriending to vulnerable members of what is a remote community. It runs a mental health and wellbeing group, a support group for women who have or have had alcohol problems and a fortnightly art group.

Sheena explained: “We currently have 50 service users receiving support. Some are elderly, some have physical or learning disability and others are suffering from mental health issues. We have a bank of more than 30 volunteer befrienders, who we try to match with clients with like interests. As the majority of our clients live alone, the support our volunteers give them helps to increase confidence and self-esteem.”

Mary Craig OBE, the Chief Executive of the Lloyds TSB Foundation, said: “I am delighted that we have been able to support this charity, which is clearly making a difference to the lives of the people it supports.”

The grant takes to £27,000 the amount the charity has received from the Foundation over the years.Charities which would like more information about applying to the Foundation for an award should contact the Lloyds TSB Foundation for Scotland on 0131 444 4020.