West Lothian Youngsters Set High Benchmark

by Heather Peebles

Friday, April 4th, 2014

abbeycourtBudding young carpenters in West Lothian have nailed a community project – by donating their latest creation to a sheltered housing complex.

Youngsters with the West Lothian Youth Action Project, Tooled Up, have been busy hammering out their newly found skills to create a bespoke bench which they presented to Abbey Court in Edinburgh.

Housing and care expert Blackwood, which runs Abbey Court sheltered housing, is delighted with the latest addition to its gardens which will be used by residents from the 44 properties in the scheme.


Phillip Morrison, Housing Officer at Blackwood, said: “We are thrilled to see talented youngsters putting their new skills to good use which will benefit so many of our residents.

“It is refreshing to see young people committed to making a positive contribution to local communities while also helping to cultivate their own skills.

“Some of our residents who suffer from disabilities can’t get out and about as much as they would like so having somewhere outdoors to relax will really help boost their quality of life.

“With the summer months fast approaching I’m sure the new bench will be a welcomed addition to our gardens that will be well used and we would like to thank the West Lothian Youth Action project for its generosity.”

The West Lothian Youth Action Project is a charity that has been working in the area for more than 20 years. It strives to provide new opportunities for young people aged between 10-21 years, including many who have faced difficult circumstances in their own lives.


Residents at Abbey Court; celebrated the installation of their new bench by hosting a tea party and inviting along Barry Walker, Tooled Up Project Co-ordinator and two of the trainees who worked on the project.

Helen Davis, Project Director at the West Lothian Youth Action Project, said: “The young people thoroughly enjoyed their visit to Abbey Court and found it greatly rewarding to see how their work will help benefit the lives of others.

“Hopefully this will inspire them to continue in their training and we hope that our small contribution to Abbey Court will help make its residents lives that bit brighter.”

Blackwood caters for a range of people including the elderly, those with physical or learning disabilities, mental health issues or sensory impairment they have a firm focus on tenants being as independent as possible.

For some, sheltered housing may be a first step towards independent living and tenants are encouraged to undertake all aspects of day-to-day living tasks as far as they are able, while being safe in the knowledge that they can call for assistance at any time.

With 1600 properties and tailored, individual care packages for more than 400 people, Blackwood has embraced the challenges of taking housing and care into innovative areas at a time when funding is increasingly.

Its board and executive team have a clear strategy to ensure a long-term and sustainable future while also helping its customers deal with welfare reforms.

It works in 29 of Scotland’s 32 council areas, working closely with many local authorities, more than any other care or housing provider.

Private: Heather Peebles

Based as a PR in Edinburgh, Heather Peebles is a highly-valued member of the team at Holyrood PR. Her work with the Scottish public relations consultancy sees her advising clients in healthcare, construction, renewables and logistics. As well as delivering numerous successful PR campaigns, she is also experienced in crisis PR and reputation management.

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