Market House showcases

Saltire Awards recognise ‘incredible’ volunteering effort

Youth volunteering development worker Neil Pearson (left), Voluntary Action Shetland executive officer Catherine Hughson (second from right) and Shetland Times editor Adam Civico (right) with the recipients of the summit awards (left to right): Imogen Teale, Rachel Keay, Thomas Hawick, Holly Cole, Mariel Leask, and Catriona Gilbertson - Photo:Dave DonaldsonOver 190 guests gathered in Mareel in Lerwick on Tuesday to celebrate the recipients of this year's Saltire Awards, which honoured over 22,000 hours of local volunteering, writes Louise Thomason.

The annual ceremony, now in its fifth year, began with music from Charity Johnson, and guests were treated to canapés and mocktails before the formal presentations got under way.

Practical and emotional help to the elderly

Shetland Royal Voluntary Service manager Mary Gair - Photo: Hans J Marter/Shetland NewsOld age can bring with it some disadvantages. Feeling isolated from society can be one of them, but there are solutions, writes Louise Thomason.

The Royal Voluntary Service (RVS) is one charity on hand to help with this. It works to ensure older people feel valued and involved in society. Based in Market House, Lerwick, the Shetland branch operates lunch clubs, social meets and other services throughout the isles to do just this.

Where friendship matters

Shetland Befriending Scheme are (from left to right): Lynn Tulloch, Project Co-ordinator; Laura Russell, ASN Development Worker; Mairi Jamieson, Young Adults Development Worker and Elaine Nisbet, 60+ Development worker. Missing from the photo is  Amanda Brown, Children and Young People’s Development Worker - Photo: Hans J Marter/ Shetland NewsFriendship can be easy to take for granted, but for many folk across the isles, it's sometimes in short supply, Louise Thomason writes in her latest contribution to our series on voluntary organisations located at Lerwick's Market House.

Thankfully, the Shetland Befriending Scheme (SBS) is one charity which can help to fill this gap and benefit people feeling lonely or in need of some extra support.

‘As long as people need us, we’re here’

Retired police officer Iain Souter of Victim Support Scotland offers independent and confidential support.For people who are the victims of crime, it can be difficult to know where to go for help and support, writes Louise Thomason in the latest of our profiles of voluntary organisations based at Lerwick's Market House.

Everyone's needs are different: some people need emotional support while others might need more practical help.

Community depends on volunteering

Kathleen Williamson (centre) and Neil Pearson with a client at the Market House offices of VAS Volunteering - Photo: Louise ThomasonAcross the isles at any given point, there are thousands of people offering their services for free. From sports clubs to hall committees, festivals and organisations, our community would not be what it is without the work of volunteers, writes Louise Thomason in her latest profile of voluntary organisations based at Market House.

Helping overcome barriers to work

Project co-ordinator Lincoln Carroll with support workers Julie Manson, Helen Fullerton and Allison Fitzsimmons. Photo: Shetland News/Louise Thomason.FINDING employment can be a difficult process. A competitive job market, having the right skills, and being able to present those skills in a format acceptable to prospective employers are all factors which can add to the stress and difficulty, even for those who feel they are qualified.

Barriers to employment such as a conviction, mental health condition or having no work experience can make the whole process even harder, but thankfully the Moving On Employment Project (MOEP) can help.

Family Mediation: helping families reduce conflict

Shona Manson 'helping reducing conflict' - Photo: Hans J Marter/ShetNewsPUTTING children first is central to the work of Family Mediation, writes Louise Thomason, in the latest of our profiles of voluntary organisations based at Lerwick's Market House.

The service provides a safe and impartial environment for parents to discuss arrangements for their children and family post separation, and an opportunity to avoid the financial and emotional implications of going to court.

A ‘one-stop-shop’ for advice and support

Some of the people working at Market House gather for a group photo in the reception area. Back row (l to r): Janice Hawick, Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB); Val Farnworth, Moving On Employment project (MOEP);  Katrina McLachlan, Voluntary Action Shetland (VAS); Julie Manson, MOEP;  Shona Manson, Family Mediation; Helen Fullerton, MOEP;  Malcolm Johnson, Disability Shetland. Front row (l to r):  Iain Souter, Victim Support; Louise Manson, MOEP; Alexis Robertson, CAB; Karen Eunson, CAB; Ellen Hughson, VAS, Mairi Jamieson, Shetland Befriending Scheme; Lynette Nicol, VAS;  Ayesha Huda, VAS. FOR THE last 11 years, Market House has provided a base for voluntary and community-led organisations in Shetland. In this new series, to be published over coming months, Louise Thomason takes a tour of the building and finds out what the various groups based there have to offer. Here she speaks to Catherine Hughson, who is in charge of umbrella organisation Voluntary Action Shetland (VAS).