Promoting excellence in community nursing across Scotland
Lynne Weir | Specialist Practitioner District Nurse NHS Borders and Queen Margaret University
According to National Carer Organisations, unpaid carers contribute £10.8 billion in unpaid care in Scotland every year. The Borders Carers Project enabled teams from community nursing, Borders Carers, and family carers to work together to find ways of promoting health and wellbeing in their caring roles. The group developed a shared commitment to hear the voices of carers of people with dementia and respond in a way that could help promote a sense of wellbeing. Information resources were developed in response to the needs and preferences expressed by carers.
Margaret Abraham | General Practice Nurse Garscadden Burn Medical Practice Glasgow
Clare Mills | Dementia Respite Manager
Sue Grassick and Lynne Gill | Advanced Nurse Practitioners NHS Grampian
Christine Stuart | General Practice Nurse Crail Medical Practice Glasgow
Building Resilience in Primary School Children
Carrie Pearcy and Shona Hinton | School Nurses NHS Forth Valley
This project focused on building resilience in Primary 4-7 in a school in an area of deprivation; where possible a whole school approach was taken encouraging all parents and staff to engage. The project started with great gusto and excitement in December 2019, however the impact of the COVID pandemic meant that unfortunately the project was unable to continue for the planned 12 months. Despite this, our achievements include classroom-based work on emotions, staff training in mindfulness and mindfulness practice rolled out in the school, staff training from Sleep Scotland and teaching resources obtained, a parent CBT based anxiety management group took place, staff and parents participated in a Walk Leaders course, individual water bottles were purchased and a hydration teaching resource was shared. Govan Men’s Shed
Sarah Everett | General Practice Nurse Govan Health Centre
Jacquie Blackwood | Child & Adolescent Mental Health Team Leader North Ayrshire Health & Social Care Partnership and Largs Academy
Mental Health Peer Support Worker
Pam Lomond | Senior Charge Nurse NHS Tayside and Mindspace Recovery College
Doneil MacLeod | Practice Mental Health Nurse Edinburgh Access Practice, Streetfit Scotland and CoCo Counselling
Nature Walks for Wellbeing
Johanna Maloney | Senior Charge Nurse NHS Forth Valley and Scottish Waterways Trust
Kirsten James University of the West of Scotland and NHS Forth Valley
A toolkit for Community Nurses experiencing Trauma
Caroline Dickson | Nurse Lecturer, Kath MacDonald | Facilitator and
Catriona Drummond |Community Nurse Manager Queen Margaret University, ListenUp Storytelling and NHS Lothian
Social Prescribing for Gypsy Travellers
Dianne Williamson | Lead for Equality and Human Rights NHS Fife
Steps to Health
Martha Knox | Community Learning Disability Nurse NHS Lothian New Directions, West Lothian
This ‘deep end’ medical practice serves a local population that faces considerable socio-economic disadvantage. The aim of the project was to help a small group of people at high risk of poor health outcomes and low life expectancy, to meet together in a group and gain the knowledge, skills and confidence to make positive healthy lifestyle choices. People who attended are enthusiastic about its value to them. The majority feel it has been helpful in bringing about healthier lifestyles, but the true value seems to be increased confidence, stress management, and the social relationships it has created. This project has grown and evolved well beyond the scope of its initial funding award.
A district nurse offered people with dementia and their carers access to advice from a hub of multidisciplinary professionals. This lead person allowed the team to work with the individual to develop a care plan focused on outcomes to improve their quality of life for all involved. The service offered many opportunities to remain connected to the community. Additionally, applying a proactive caseload management approach reduced the need for unscheduled visits.
This project focused on helping people with learning disabilities to recognise when they are mentally well and what can keep them well, as well as what can make them unwell and the supports available to help them recover. The series of 10 group sessions and sharing of experiences were used to create a ‘feeling better, keeping well’ plan, which could be shared with carers, family or others who might be involved in providing support. The sessions were also intended as a starting point to embed recovery language and principles into the care and treatment of adults with learning disabilities who also experience mental health difficulties.
This project aimed to remove some of the barriers to participating in physical activity by embedding a weekly walking group in the practice, and by embedding a Glasgow Life Live Active Advisor in the practice. This increased accessibility helped encourage those who had previously felt less confident and less able to participate. There were measurable improvements in areas such as weight and blood pressure. An unexpected effect was being nominated for several awards and winning the British Heart Foundation ‘Team of the Year’ award for our work on this and other interventions to improve cardiovascular health.
The men in this project have shared, discovered, or reawakened skills, found a suitable property to refurbish, and created a facility that offers a wide range of meaningful activity to men who are no longer working. It provides a sense of purpose, usefulness, and optimism in the community, offering woodwork, gardening, arts, cooking, model-making, games, and social relationships. Health advice and education is available, including weight, BMI, and blood pressure checks as well as support to self-manage long-term conditions. This project has grown considerably since the initial funding award and you can read more here.Full report
WRAP is a Wellness Recovery Action Plan approach that helps people to understand what helps them stay emotionally and psychologically well. This project offered one initial awareness session for all first-year pupils and one for all the teachers in the secondary school. A subsequent WRAP group was run for pupils and for teachers, comprising three full-day sessions. By training a small number of teachers and inclusion workers as facilitators, the project helped create a space for a ‘whole school approach’ to wellbeing. In addition, the project encouraged more joint working between CAMHS and schools in North Ayrshire.
This was a partnership project to develop and test the role for peer support in community mental health, creating and sustaining links with the voluntary sector, health services and the local authority. A peer support worker with lived experience of mental health ill health was recruited to support people with severe and enduring mental health illnesses to engage in physical activity. The peer worker benefitted from work experience, training, and paid employment, and an exit strategy supported transition into longer-term employment. As well as establishing walking, cycling, and gym groups, this project created video stories of recovery, challenged perceptions of mental ill health and associated stigma, inspired colleagues in other areas of Scotland and provided a route to further training and employment for a small number of volunteers.
This project explored issues around homelessness, transitions, relationships and attachment-informed care giving. The project lead initiated conversations and interviews with a small number of service users, in order to find out about their experiences and their views. The final report illustrates many of the challenges faced by people who have rarely, if ever, felt welcome, cared for, or supported in any areas of their lives.
This project offered adults experiencing poor mental health the opportunity to spend time outdoors undertaking nature walks, socialising together and engaging in a range of activities such as yoga, exercise sessions, art, mindfulness and photography. At the end of each ten-week group, participants enjoyed a canal boat trip. All participants, including NHS staff, benefitted from the chance to spend time together outdoors and away from clinic settings.
This project focused on understanding and improving hospital visiting time for people with dementia and their carers. By creating scope for meaningful activity and participation to provide comfort, the project suggested alternatives to pharmacological intervention for distress. For the community nurse involved, the project also provided experience of conducting a small research project.
This project was undertaken with the intention of co-designing a resource to help community nurses cope with secondary psychological trauma in the workplace. Facilitators used a combination of storytelling and practice development in a series of workshops with eight community nurses. This was in response to research and experiences of practice asserting that community nurses are currently experiencing high levels of ongoing stress in their roles. Exacerbated by the Covid pandemic, consequences of secondary psychological trauma include increased attrition, poor retention of staff, compassion fatigue, burnout and PTSD.
This project introduced a social prescribing service for a settled Gypsy Traveller encampment site. A range of partner agencies in health and social care, the third sector and community organisations became involved in supporting individuals on site. Activities included a listening service, childhood immunisations, nutrition, weight management and blood glucose monitoring. The local fire service fitted smoke alarms, curtains, light bulbs and heaters where requested. Gypsy Traveller populations are amongst the most deprived groups in Scotland, and this project helped overcome some of the barriers that make health care so difficult for this population to access.
This project developed and delivered a bespoke series of health improvement workshops that were welcoming, informal, and tailored to the needs of people with learning disabilities. The workshops provided a space to learn more about healthy eating, physical activity, health screening and mental health. People with learning disabilities face health inequalities because they often experience significant barriers to accessing health promotion information. This project provided accessible support, strengthened connections between the NHS team and the third sector community service, and generated a legacy of continuing health conversations between people with learning disabilities and those supporting them.
Jess Davidson | Police Custody Nurse NHS Lothian, SACRO and Police Scotland
Mina O’Hara | BBV Nurse Team Manager
Towards a Mentally Flourishing School
Tania Ferguson | Specialist Community Public Health Nurse NHS Borders and Scottish Borders Council
Liz Smith | Infant Feeding Nurse NHS Ayrshire & Arran, North Ayrshire Council and The Breastfeeding Network
Health and Wellbeing for Women Working in Lap Dancing Bars
Tracy Davis | Clinical Nurse Manager
NHS Lothian and SACRO
People in police custody are some of the most marginalised and disenfranchised in society. They find it difficult to access services. Those who are detained on a Friday will spend the weekend in custody, and if they want to speak to someone about health needs, there is rarely anyone available. This project devised and delivered a new partnership approach between nurses, police officers and SACRO workers to provide barrier-free access to healthcare support for those who wanted it. By focusing on the needs of people in custody, the service was organised without waiting lists, there were no cancellations, and people received immediate care as well as onward connections to community support where appropriate.
This project provided an opt-out testing system with instant results for Hepatitis C Virus for those identified as ‘at risk’ in police custody. The aim was to simplify the care pathway and make it easier for people to access BBV (blood borne virus) testing. Forensic nurses, BBV nurses and the community BBV team collaborated to provide training, devise new systems and processes, and to improve partnership working across the different teams.
This project aimed to create a shared vision for a mentally flourishing school. The project team worked together to establish an innovative whole school approach, which sought to improve social, emotional, and psychological wellbeing. Pupils and staff came together in a range of events, undertook Scottish Mental Health First Aid training, and learned about approaches to managing stress.
This project was designed to increase knowledge of breastfeeding among young people living in an area of North Ayrshire where breastfeeding rates were critically low; at the time of the project, only 17% of women were exclusively breastfeeding at 6-8 weeks compared to the Scottish average of 26.8%. The aims of the project were that children, young people and communities have increased knowledge and are able to make healthy and informed choices about feeding babies as well as having a better understanding about the barriers to breastfeeding and why community support is important.
This project sought to reach out to women who often face significant barriers to engaging with health services. A community mental health nurse and a SACRO worker visited a range of bars and other venues to provide information and health care, and to listen to how women could be better supported by health services. As a result, a small but significant number of women attended health service clinics, and the service was able to adapt its ways of working in order to better reach this group.
Since 2015, 20 projects have been completed in Scotland.
Click next to each project for more information.
How to Apply
Catalysts for Change
Funded by QNIS in partnership with The National Lottery Community Fund