Signpost News

In photograph L- R
Arlene (Tesco) Yvonne Laird (SFRS) Claire Dempsey (SIP) David Reid (SFRS) PC Karen Ross (Braes Community Police Team) Angela (Tesco) PC Steven Lorimer (Braes Community Police Team)

LSO David Lockhart and Station Manager P&P Stuart Watson from the Scottish Fire & Rescue Service, Falkirk Fire Station kindly donated £500 to Signpost Recovery Harm Reduction Team and The Social Inclusion Project (South). In addition Tesco, Redding Road Store, Falkirk donated £50 and assisted with our in-store shopping trip.

This is the fourth consecutive year that Falkirk Fire Station and Tesco Redding Road Store have assisted with our appeal. It is extremely heartening to know how much people care and we cannot thank them enough for their kindness at a time of year which can be very lonely and difficult for some.

This money enabled us to purchase food for 50 individuals within the Falkirk District area to the most vulnerable and in need. This food is being distributed this week along with Home Fire Safety Visits to ensure these individuals are safe and secure within their own properties.

If you or someone you know is vulnerable or may be at risk from fire please get in touch and arrange a FREE home fire safety visit with local firefighters by calling 0800 0731 999 or visit
A wide range of tips on how to keep yourself and your home safe from fire are available on the SFRS website:

Transfer Your Skills to a Successful Role in Substance Misuse and/or Social Care

Thinking of a change in career? Many of the people coming to work in the Substance Misuse and/or Social Care sector do so as a second or third career. Even though you may not have previous experience in the Substance Misuse and/or Social Care fields you’re looking to enter, you are highly likely to have many of the skills that could help you to be successful. Examples of skills that would transfer well into the Substance Misuse and/or Social Care sector include:
• Communication skills – Most Substance Misuse and/or Social Care roles require a lot of interaction with people, including those who are dependent upon substances, unwell, upset and experiencing distress. Someone working in the must be a “people person,” have a lot of empathy and be good at communicating with people;

• Dealing with difficult and demanding situations – Working in Substance Misuse and/or Social Care can also be difficult, and it is important that you are good at dealing with your own emotions, feelings and stress levels as well as also helping others to deal with the difficulties and demands they are experiencing;

• Attention to detail – Paperwork is a big part of most Substance Misuse and Social Care roles. Successful employees bring an ability in terms of attention to detail to their roles, thus, ensuring accurate recording, reporting and care planning, which, in turn, enables the provision of coordinated and outcomes focussed care.
Owing to expansion, Signpost Recovery is currently recruiting for a number of roles within our organisation. Please see for details. However, having successfully hosted a number of student placements and having supported a number of trainee placements in the past, we have also made provision for a number of entry level traineeships for people who are interested in working in Substance Misuse and/or Social Care but have found that a lack of experience in these fields a barrier to changing career. Signpost Recovery would be interested in meeting people with work experience in other fields, but where the potential candidate can demonstrate that the skills are transferrable. However, the most important qualities are an interest in people and an understanding of what difficulties they may be facing.
As part of this recruitment, Signpost Recovery are offering fast track training for successful candidates in a range of qualifications eg Diploma in Cognitive Behavioural Therapy.
If you’ve never worked in the sector before and are looking for a change of career, Signpost Recovery are hosting our own ‘Recruitment Fayre on
Monday 17th December 2018 1100hrs – 1400hrs
Venue: Units 1 & 2, Block 7, Cooperage Business Village, Cooperage way, Alloa, FK10 3LP

This event will provide prospective candidates and/or those considering a change in career with a good opportunity to understand in more detail what our work involves.
Please call 01259 272112 for booking and attendance information.

Signpost News




We would like to take this opportunity to say thanks on behalf of Signpost Recovery for the massive contribution made by both the individual staff member and by the Bank of Scotland Foundation under the auspices of the Matched Giving Programme. We were extremely touched and grateful for their unexpected donation.


Dear Colleagues,

Can I, once again, please urge those colleagues that are Clackmannanshire residents and citizens to please go online and participate in the current Clackmannanshire Council budget consultation: Online budget consultation . However, for those of you that have already contributed, my next ask would be for you all to get either your partner, one of your family members or one of your neighbours who is aware of the CHL service, to also go online and have their say in the consultation. To simply wipe out and/or cease an award winning, independently evaluated and academically examined service in its entirety, a service that has been helping your neighbours, families, friends and fellow Clackmannanshire residents for almost 10 years, will have a significantly negative and detrimental impact on some of the most vulnerable citizens in Clackmannanshire. Alas, in my experience, the impact will not halt there, this type of cessation will also have a huge impact on the wider community and already stretched statutory services as they are left to try and deal with the resultant gaps in service provision. This is a conclusion I draw with the utmost surety having completed two substantial Equalities Impact Assessments (EQUIA’s) in the last two years and having then seen the certain impact on people in terms of the “needs” of Clackmannanshire Council’s equality duty  , both EQUIA’s were in excess of 6500 words (18 pages of a4) in length on completion.

Some of the figures pertaining to the levels of health inequalities bourn by your fellow Clackmannanshire citizens and communities are startling. Despite the success of CHL over the last 10 years, there is still a lot of work to be done, health inequalities remain, a stubborn and prevalent issue for those of us whom are working with, providing services too and supporting the people of Clackmannanshire, the levels of inequality, are significant and are further exacerbated by issues linked to deprivation, stigma, fear, trauma, isolation and exclusion, issues that are very much entrenched in some of our Clackmannanshire communities (Alcohol Focus, 2011; Millard et al., 2016; Moane, 2014). More specifically:

  1. For Clackmannanshire, 2014 saw the percentage of smoking prevalence (adults 16+) sitting at 30%, which, is significantly higher than the Scottish average of 20%;
  2. Again, in 2014, the percentage of young people not in employment, education or training (NEET) was 9%, which, the statisticians determine was 47%, yes Forty Seven % higher, than the Scottish level of 6%;
  3. In 2014/15, the crude rate of violent crimes recorded was 17/10,000, which was 46% higher than the Scottish level of 12/10,000;
  4. When it comes to alcohol, the figures are astounding,  research conducted by Alcohol Focus Scotland (2011) looked at the estimated costs of alcohol related harm in Scotland, this provides us with figures on the indicative costs to each of the 32 local Council’s across Scotland and the cost to Clackmannanshire is estimated at £19.55 million per annum.- – : £386 per person, what does this mean, let’s compare this with our Forth Valley neighbours:

* Falkirk: £364 per person (total estimated cost of alcohol-related harm £55.8 million); and

** Stirling: £354 per person (total estimated cost of alcohol-related harm £31.79 million).

  1. In 2014/15, the percentage of people prescribed medication for anxiety, depression or psychosis was, at 20%, higher than the Scotland overall average of 17%;
  2. In 2012, the percentage of children living in poverty was 20%, which was 32% higher than the Scottish level of 15%;
  3. Whilst Scottish Government (2012) studies show, that on average, less than 45% of people meet the recommended guidelines for the amount of physical activity they undertake. In 2016-17, 65% of the people using our free (Means Tested), and/or subsidised CHL classes have managed to achieve the recommended guidelines for exercise. Moreover, a significant majority of the remainder were building up to this as new attendees or were planning to increase their activity in the near future to achieve this;
  4. In 2012/13–2014/15, the percentage of babies exclusively breastfed at 6–8 weeks was 18%, which was 32% lower than the Scottish comparator level of 27%; and
  5. In 2014, the percentage of the working age population employment deprived was 15%, which was 24% higher than the Scottish average of 12%.

When discussing the ‘Third Sector’ sector the Scottish Government (2013) ‘Third Sector’ webpage ascertained that it “makes a direct impact on the growth of Scotland’s economy, the wellbeing of its citizens and the improvement of its public services.” The ‘Third Sector’ plays a key role in all parts of Scottish society today; crucially the sector continues to diversify in accordance with the presenting issues of our communities (Scothorne et al., 2014; Scottish Government, 2013; SCVO, 2014). If funding cuts damage ‘Third Sector Organisations’ (TSO’s)and the communities they serve and support, what would the complete cessation of a service like CHL mean? – The loss of CHL will undoubtedly have a negative impact on the local community (Moane, 2014; Scottish Drugs Forum, 2018)).

TSO’s like Signpost Recovery, Tullibody Healthy Living and Addictions Support & Counselling are also considered to be ‘value-driven’ and this means they are motivated by the desire to achieve social goals such as improving public health, welfare, the environment or economic well-being rather than having the desire to make financial profits (Chambers & Edwards-Stuart, 2007). Importantly the ‘Third Sector’ re-invests any surpluses generated back into their communities when they continue in the pursuit of their goals and charitable objectives. CHL budgets have been reducing on an annual basis for the last 4 years, conversely, at a time when CHL is witnessing a significant increase in the demand for their service(s). Across Scotland, TSO’s discuss having to do more work despite a drop in public sector grant funding (Egdell & Dutton, 2017). However, CHL is more than the sum of our ‘Third Sector’ membership, we could not do what we do without our delivery partners – CHL’s public sector component – NHS Forth Valley and Clackmannanshire Council. CHL was doing the ‘Health and Social Care Integration’ approach for 6 years before it became the national direction of travel, and, arguably, our ‘integration’ involves a level of complexity not yet approached by the IJB’s owing to the ‘Third Sectors’ management and partnership role in CHL’s integration.


CHL underwent an external and independent evaluation, the file is an adobe PDF and it is 8 MB, I am delighted to inform you that the highlights of the independent and external evaluation were:

  1. Staff are skilled in developing relationships with both service users and partners;
  2. Service users highly value and appreciate the accessibility and flexibility of the service;
  3. Service users’ various physical and mental health needs are addressed by CHL via the diverse range of initiatives available;
  4. The service prevents difficulties from escalating by offering low level practical and emotional support;
  5. Service users feel a high degree of trust towards CHL, including knowing that their confidentiality is upheld within their small communities;
  6. Service users value that the service is time monitored rather than time-limited;
  7. CHL staff feel supported and confident in their respective roles;

8.CHL staff respect each other’s expertise and approach and utilise each other appropriately;    and

  1. CHL positively impacts on individuals, families and communities.

Please find the external and independent evaluation below:

Learning from a Stakeholder Perspective of Clackmannanshire Healthier Lives – January 2018


Norrie Moane

General Manager


Alcohol Focus Scotland (2011). The Cost of Alcohol in Clackmannanshire: 2010/11. [Online]. Available From: [accessed 17th January 2011].

Chambers, C., & Edwards-Stuart, F., (2007). Leadership in the Social Economy: Research Report. London: School for Social Entrepreneurs.

Egdell, V., & Dutton, M., (2017). Third sector independence: Relations with the state in an age of austerity. Voluntary Sector Review. 8(1), PP. 25-40.

Millard, A., McCartney, G., MacKinnon, A., Van Heelsum, A., Gasiorowski, A.,  &  Barkat, S., (2016). Clackmannanshire Health and Wellbeing Profiles – Key Indicators and Overview. Edinburgh: ScotPHO.

Scottish Government (2012). Scottish Health Survey 2012. Edinburgh: Scottish Government.

Moane, N., (2014). The Role of Entrepreneurial Leadership within the Third Sector in Delivering the ‘Re-Shaping Care Strategy’ within Stirling and Clackmannanshire. Unpublished MSc Dissertation. Edinburgh: Edinburgh Napier University.

Scothorne, R., Halliday, J., Toner, D., Burns, M., Fawcett, J., & Costley, N., (2014). Glasgow Centre for Population Health: The changing nature of work in the third sector in Glasgow. [Online]. Available from: [accessed 13th January 2017].

Scottish Drugs Forum (2018). Learning from a stakeholder perspective of Clackmannanshire Healthier Lives. Glasgow: Scottish Drugs Forum.

Scottish Government (2013). Third Sector Homepage. [Online]. Available from: [accessed 12th January 2018].

SCVO (2014). SCVO State of the Sector Report: April 2014. [Online].Available from: [accessed 16th January 2018].


Potential Loss of Service – Clackmannanshire Healthy Lives (CHL)

CHL, like most local services, has weathered the financial storm over the years, and, like most, has had to make significant efficiencies in recent times. However, this month Signpost Recovery were given the devastating news that CHL has been identified by a Clackmannanshire Council Officer as a saving in its entirety as per the Clackmannanshire Councils Budget Consultation Document. This document in question is available from:

For those who may be a little less familiar with the overall history of CHL, Signpost Recovery have produced a document – Clackmannanshire Healthier Lives: Stakeholder Information which provides more information about the history, work, development and success and achievements of CHL. Clackmannanshire Healthier Lives – Stakeholder Information

The document is also useful for those who also have a greater knowledge of CHL and Signpost Recovery would be both delighted and grateful if you were able to spare some time to read about CHL and reflect upon how the loss of this project will affect service users, families, communities and local stakeholders across Clackmannanshire.

The loss of CHL could have further serious ramifications for service provision in Clackmannanshire. The loss of CHL would effectively mean that Signpost Recovery received less than 5% of its overall funding from Clackmannanshire which would be a reduction from just under 20% which is inclusive of CHL funding. This reduction could result in it becoming incredibly difficult for Signpost Recovery to continue to justify having its main operating premises in Alloa and could possibly mean the end of nearly 16 years of being based in Clackmannanshire. As Signpost Recovery are the only main Substance Misuse Service to have premises in Clackmannanshire, this would be a significant loss and have a huge impact upon the local community and other service providers.

The CHL budget is £167,000, however, this brings a value far beyond that of the finances involved e.g. the Clackmannanshire Older Adults Forum have used Signpost Recovery premises free of charge for over 4 years. Signpost Recovery is fully committed to the spirit of sharing, collaboration and delivers all services with a partnership ethos. Through Signpost Recovery’s Alloa offices, facilities are provided free to Combat Stress, Community Alcohol and Drugs Service (CADS), Citizen’s Advice Bureau (CAB), Scottish Families affected by Drugs & Alcohol (SFAD), Psychological Services, Community Justice Partners, Social Work Services, Scottish Mental Health First Aid Training and Health Promotion. Early in 2017, Addiction Support and Counselling (ASC) Community Rehabilitation programme re-located from Stirling to co-locate with Signpost Recovery in Alloa. This has given a substantial saving to the public purse in relation to cost of premises and has also benefited Clacks citizens who no longer have to travel to Stirling to access this programme.

Signpost Recovery is a big employer in the local Clackmannanshire area and in addition, regularly support a number of free student placement and opportunities each year. Furthermore, Signpost Recovery contracts with businesses and services locally and this presence ensures rapidity and ease of access to partner services for Clackmannanshire’s citizens.

Therefore, with all this in mind, on behalf of CHL and Signpost Recovery, if you feel, are of the view or are worried about the loss of CHL to Clackmannanshire, please spare some time to contribute to the consultation and to share your thoughts, feelings, worries and assessments of what it would mean to you as a colleague, citizen, referrer, stakeholder, partner agency and or client/service to lose CHL.

The Consultation is now open and you can contribute via the link below:

  • Online budget consultation
  • Or you can attend one of the Face-to-face public meetings below:
  • Cochrane Hall, Alva, 9th January 2018………… 18.00-20.00
  • Bowmar Community Centre, 10th January 2018 …….18.00-20.00
  • Sauchie Hall, 15th January 2018 …….18.00-20.00
  • Tullibody Civic Centre,18th January 2018 …….18.00-20.00

Deadline for responses is 2nd Feb 2018

CHL needs your help and Signpost Recovery would be grateful for any support you can offer. Please feel free to contact Norrie Moane, General Manager of Signpost Recovery on 01259 272112 if you would like to discuss the consultation or the attached CHL Stakeholder information document.

Please feel free to share the attached report widely you feel this would be supportive in terms of Signpost Recovery’s aspirations to keep CHL doing what it does best – Helping Clacks Citizens make the changes that matter.


Signpost Recovery




Following our successful Annual General Meeting (AGM) on the 26th October 2017, the Signpost Recovery Annual Report for 2016 – 2017 is now available to download. This is one of the most important documents we produce and within it we provide details about our objectives, activities and outputs. We also provide information about this year’s performance and financial results. In publishing this report, we want to give a clear picture of what we do, what we have achieved and how we use the money we receive to meet our charitable objectives and activities. The report also helps to fulfil the requirements placed on us by both law and regulation to provide information publicly about how we use the income we have received.

Annual Report: Signpost Recovery 2016-17 Final Report – Master








We are delighted to announce that the Social Inclusion Project (SIP) has been shortlisted in the ‘Health and Social Care Integration Award’ category at the Herald Society Awards 2017 which are being held in association with Social Work Scotland.

The Herald society awards





The awards are due to take place on the 1st November 2017, however, regardless of the result, we are pleased that SIP has been recognised in this way.


New Impact of Parental Substance Misuse Assessment Tool Developed

New Impact of Parental Substance Misuse Assessment Tool Developed

All agencies need to work together in tackling the problems caused by substance misuse in families in order to safeguard children and promote their well-being. It is important not to generalise or make assumptions about the impact of parental/carer drug and/or alcohol use on a child. Therefore, it is of paramount importance that the implications for the child/ren are properly assessed taking full cognisance of the parents/carers ability to maintain both consistent and adequate standards of care (Scottish Government, 2012; Scottish Government, 2014).

Given the launch of the Scottish Government (2013) Getting our Priorities Right (Updated Good Practice Guidance for use by all practitioners working with children, young people and families affected by substance use) and the Forth Valley Alcohol and Drug Partnership’s (ADP’s) and Forth Valley Child Protection Committee’s (CPC’s) (2016) Getting Our Priorities Right for Children and Families affected by Parental Problematic Alcohol and Drug Use, there is now a greater need to ensure our assessments, interventions, treatment and recovery plans are able to contribute to a wider coordinated approach to giving children, young people and their families the best support possible.

Therefore, a working group from the Stirling & Clackmannanshire ADP/CPC Subgroup explored a number of options in terms of identifying an appropriate means of assessing the impact of an adults substance misuse on their ability to provide parental care. This exercise concluded with a decision to utilise aspects of the Assessment of Parental Substance Misuse from the ‘Renfrewshire Integrated Assessment and Plan for Children’s Services’ and elements of the ‘Impact of Parental Substance Use’ (IPSU) assessment tool by Glasgow Addiction Services, in the development of an ‘Impact of Parental Substance Misuse (IPSM) Assessment’ tool for use throughout our Forth Valley Substance Misuse Services.

IPSM Paper