Community Connecting

Supporting older people to rebuild lost confidence by matching them with a volunteer.

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It’s hard to know what groups and activities are going on in your local area and, at times, it’s even harder to leave home and get involved. We can support you to decide what you’d like to do, and to get out there and take part!

Community Connecting recognises this and supports older people to find out what services, activities and groups are available in their local area. It is available to anyone over 65 living in Edinburgh. Feel free to download our Community Connecting leaflet or, for a short introduction to the one to one aspect of the service, watch the video on the right.

We support people to rebuild lost confidence and try out new things or get involved again in previous interests and hobbies. We do this in a variety of ways to suit the person using the service.

How does it work?

There are four different ways we can help out:

Information: It can be really hard to find out what’s going on in your local area and how to get involved. We can meet with you to talk about the kind of things you’d like to get involved with and pass on all the information you will need to get started.

Telephone Support: As well as offering information, we can match you up with a volunteer who will phone you on a regular basis to hear how you are doing and how you got on using the information we provided. This listening ear can support you with any worries you may have about getting out there and can support you to find ways to cope with these worries.

Group Support: We know how hard it is to get out and meet new people and take part in new groups and activities. We offer opportunities to meet with others in a similar situation and to enable you to take the first steps into your community in a safe and protected environment.

One to One Support: For some people, being in a group situation can feel uncomfortable and so we also provide one to one support to help you build up your confidence, find out what services and groups you can access and start to take part.

People using this service are carefully matched with a volunteer and together they develop a plan to get the most out of the support. This volunteer support is available for up to four months.

Contact us

We are a small friendly team so please do get in touch if you would like to find out more.

Julie Dick on 0131 225 8508 or

Hayley Chandler on 0131 225 8508 or

If you would like to refer someone to this service, please complete and return a referral form.

Community Connecting is funded through the Change Fund and is available across the City of Edinburgh. If you are not in our catchment area, the service can be delivered by other organisations. In the North East it is delivered by Pilmeny Development Project. Call them on 0131 553 2559. In the North West and South East, it is delivered by Places for People, contactable on 0131 339 0280.

Assistant Manager:


Need help now?

If you or someone you care for is facing a crisis and in distress, please contact NHS 24 on 111 or your GP directly.

Click here for further information and contact details.

Volunteering Information

If you would like to get involved in Community Connecting and can spare a couple of hours a week to support an older person who is feeling lonely and isolated, why not volunteer with us?

To find out more about how you can get involved, give Alison or Julie a phone on 0131 225 8508 or email us at

You can also look at the role description here.

We are delighted that Community Connecting won a Get Up and Go Award ‘Service Making a Difference 2013’. We are also thrilled that our volunteer Thora Bisset won an award for her outstanding contribution.

‘It’s good to have someone who is happy to spend time with me and listen and chat. My volunteer is lovely; she’s always happy which makes me feel happier. I am able to get out now and I can go back to the places I loved.’ Service User

‘Volunteering with Health in Mind Community Connecting has improved my confidence, self-esteem and self-worth and motivated me. The feeling of helping and supporting someone to achieve their own goals has been rewarding. The support and the training that Health In Mind offer volunteers  is excellent.’ Volunteer

Watch the video below to hear about volunteer Cynthia's experiences of volunteering with Community Connecting:


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