Renfrewshire Connectedness Champions Project is running some online activity throughout September and October.
Online tuition from local creative artists will be delivered through three classes delivered online using Zoom. These classes are free to Renfrewshire residents. Where the classes run over 4 weeks please make sure you will be able to attend every session.
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  1.  Sm: Art will run over 4 sessions, starting September 24th and the last weekly session on October 15th.  Participants will be taken through the process of taking a photograph with their smartphone and then using free apps to manipulate the image and create art. This course will be taught by local textiles designer Sharron McGrady.
  2. Learn to Sew, Chat as you Go will also run over 4 weekly sessions starting September 23rd and the last weekly session October 10th. Participants will learn the basics of sewing as they make a pin cushion and an eye mask.  This class will be taught by local creative artist Susan McInnes. A ‘make kit’ will be delivered to those taking part.  We have supported a local business and sourced our sewing kits from The Haberdashery on Paisley High St.
  3.  Lantern/lampshade making workshop. This will take place on October 22nd.  A ‘make kit’ will be delivered to participants. This workshop will be led by Sharron McGrady.
And throughout September and October, we will be hosting online discussion sessions, also delivered via Zoom. These are focussed on gathering the experiences of Renfrewshire residents during the lockdown and recent weeks as recovery from the COVID 19 crisis has begun, albeit it with the reissuing of some restrictions. We want to know what lockdown felt like for people, how they coped, what worked, what didn’t and what people felt about the way in which services responded. We would like to give as many people as possible the opportunity to take part, as the findings from these sessions will be part of a report to the Scottish Government and Renfrewshire Health & Social Care Partnership. { All sessions will be run with confidentiality assured, we will anonymize all responses }
 The sessions will be facilitated by our ‘Connectedness Champions’, who themselves have had the experience of loneliness and social isolation.
For information on how to apply for the creative online classes or how to register for the discussion sessions please email
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Renfrewshire Health and Social Care Partnership (HSCP) and RAMH (recovery across mental health) have created a direct access free telephone support line to help people talk about how they are feeling during the Coronavirus pandemic.

The new support line 0800 221 8904 is available Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm and adds to the collaborative ongoing localised support already available across Renfrewshire.

Stephen McLellan of RAMH said: “We are aware that many people are worried about the effect of Coronavirus as well as the practical, emotional and financial effects and are looking to speak to someone about their feelings.

“They may not want to trouble their GP or even loved ones with their concerns. This support line aims to make speaking with someone who understands their anxieties that little bit easier.”

For the last few months, Renfrewshire HSCP and RAMH have worked together to make speaking about concerns simpler.

Stephen added: “We are now introducing a direct, freephone contact number, to enable as many people as possible to get in touch without cost. Trained and experienced staff will be on hand to offer a supportive ear and can assist with putting people in touch with resources, information and added assistance throughout Renfrewshire.”

Renfrewshire HSCP has been working with other local organisations to focus on what could improve wellbeing across Renfrewshire, recently launching the Renfrewshire Bereavement Network.

Councillor Jacqueline Cameron, Chair of the Renfrewshire Integration Joint Board said: “It is important that we always put the people of Renfrewshire first in our minds, especially at a time like this.

“This support line is a good example of where we are working with community organisations and locally based charities to help support those who need us most.

“A collaborative community response will have a bigger impact on people’s wellbeing than any one organisation can make alone and we are exploring further opportunities to make this happen in Renfrewshire.”

Find out more at:

It may only be August, but RAMH have already announced the date and venue for their Christmas Fair! The event will be held on Saturday 7th December from 11.30am-3.30pm at Holy Trinity & St Barnabas Church (between Paisley Sheriff Court & Gilmour Street Station).
We will have shopping, live music, a festive bake sale, refreshments and various other entertainments still to be confirmed. It is family friendly and free to attend.
We have had lots of interest so far, but we are still looking for some more local businesses who would like to take a stall for the shopping part of the event (boutiques, jewellers, gifts & crafts, etc)
 *The stalls are £15.00 each*
For more information or to book a stall, contact
We hope to see you all there!
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RAMH (Recovery Across Mental Health) are excited to announce a newly developed mental health awareness training programme aimed at local businesses, agencies and organisations.

In addition to the safeTALK, ASIST and Scotland’s Mental Health First Aid courses we currently offer, we have a few new additions. There is now a half-day “Introduction to Mental Health Awareness” as well as full-day “Mental Health Awareness” and “Mental Health Awareness for Managers” courses.

We hope these courses will help local businesses, agencies and organisations to not only improve and promote positive mental health within their workplaces, but also equip their staff with skills they can carry over into their personal lives.

We are inviting any interested parties to attend an informal, no-obligation Breakfast Meeting at our Head Office (41 Blackstoun Road, Paisley, PA3 1LU) from 8.30am-9.30am on Tuesday 11th June. The instructors will be there to provide more information on the different courses, and answer any questions you may have. To reserve a space and allow us to account for catering, or for more information, please email

You do not need any previous knowledge or training in mental health to benefit from these courses – mental ill health can affect anyone at any time, and it’s our aim to ensure as many people as possible are equipped to provide the appropriate support.

Registrations for our 2018 FIREWALK on Saturday 13th January are now OPEN, and we are inviting you to save 33% on your registration fee by booking on our early bird rate.

You will learn to overcome fear and channel confidence into every part of your life before walking 15ft over coals of 800C. This unique experience is offered to you at just £10 registration fee (early bird rate) and £45 minimum sponsorship. All you have to do is complete and return the attached form, transfer your £10 registration fee by BACS, and share your fundraising with friends and family. Your supporters are welcome to watch you complete the Firewalk on the day.

The Firewalk takes place from 3pm-7pm on Saturday, January 13th at ProLife Fitness Centre in Paisley, with free parking, and close to Gilmour Street Station.

For many, the Firewalk is a life changing experience. Equally you will be raising crucial funds for local mental health services. Last year’s event was a sell out, so we recommend early booking. Please email completed forms or any queries to me, as above.

Get your New Year off to a really uniquely fresh start! We look forward to welcoming you

in January 2018.


please contact

Charity bosses have congratulated their staff for helping them to achieve an Investors In People Gold Award.


Mental Health charity RAMH have recently been awarded the prestigious accolade following a rigorous evaluation of standards across the organisation.


Operations Manager Shirley McCuish said “this is a significant achievement for RAMH. We are extremely proud of the contribution that each and every member of the team makes towards providing excellent service delivery, staff support and supervision, innovative leadership and development of services. A gold award is a team effort which is really worth celebrating.”

Investors in People is an internationally recognised accreditation for improved management of people. The Standard defines what it takes to lead, support and manage people well for sustainable business results. Only the top 19% of organisations achieve gold by demonstrating that they consistently perform at a high level of people management.

RAMH employs almost 200 staff and a further 50 volunteers to help provide comprehensive mental health services across the west of Scotland. Every year they support over 4,000 people who are experiencing mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder or self harm. RAMH services include crisis support, housing support and a range of creative, educational, social and therapeutic groups.

If you know someone RAMH could help, and for more information about their services visit or contact or 0141 847 8900.

Brighter Renfrewshire Alcohol Awareness Week was celebrated by RAMH with an alcohol-free BBQ attended by almost 80 guests. The rain stayed off and guests enjoyed a range of non-alcoholic drinks and healthy BBQ food including fish kebabs, grilled chicken, salads and couscous. The smoothie bike allowed guests to blend smoothies by pedaling their choice of fruit into a delicious drink.

Those in attendance included service users and staff from various agencies including alcohol support organisations, local information services such as Renfrewshire CAB, and local councillors.

The event was held in one of three of the beautiful RAMH gardens which is maintained by the Wellbeing Gardening Groups. Ecotherapy is a productive way to manage symptoms of stress, depression and anxiety. Plus ecotherapy is beneficial because being outdoors, creating and nurturing plants, and being physically active boosts feelings of wellbeing.

The Wellbeing Gardening Groups are supported in 2017 by Tesco Bags Of Help who awarded three RAMH gardening groups a total of £12,000. The crucial funding means that three gardens will undergo extensive development to create spaces where people experiencing mental ill health can benefit from ecotherapy, enjoy being outdoors and seek peace and solace.


Local mental health services provided by RAMH have exceeded required standards and smashed quality targets.

The RAMH Housing Support Service achieved the best possible scores from the Care Inspectorate who awarded them 6s (excellent) for all elements of their work.

The Care Inspectorate Report noted that RAMH excelled in “ensuring that services worked in a person centered and recovery focused way”.

Equally the organisation has recently achieved ISO9001, a quality standard certificate, for continuous improvement across all aspects of their operations.

RAMH Operations Manager, Shirley McCuish, said “we’re delighted to have achieved an excellent report from the Care Inspectorate and to have attained our ISO9001.

Shirley explained “The people who use RAMH, and their carers, can be confident that we deliver best quality services, suited to their needs, to help them recover from all mental health issues.”

She added “We are proud of our RAMH staff who continually work to review best practice, improve standards, and who passionately enjoy working with the people they support.”

RAMH promotes recovery from mental ill health, and empowers people to build independent, fulfilled lives. The charity supports a range of diagnoses including depression, anxiety and bipolar disorder, and their services include crisis support, housing support services, plus a range of creative, educational, social and therapeutic groups.

If you know someone RAMH could help, and for more information about their services visit or contact or 0141 847 8900.

Push your comfort zone, achieve something you never expected you could, meet a great bunch of new people, all while supporting local mental health services. Join us for the 2017 Canyoning Challenge on the River Tay! You’ll be jumping, swimming, and even abseiling through a beautiful gorge, and seeing sights you can only see from the river.


It’s on Saturday 26th August 2017 and includes return transport from Paisley or Barrhead, half day’s canyoning, pub dinner to finish and home before sunset. A fantastic, unique experience for only £15 registration fee + £75 sponsorship, all going directly to local mental health services. Book now! or 0141 847 8900

Start swotting up for the RAMH annual Dinner & Quiz – this year hosted by the wonderful broadcaster & writer Vanessa Collingridge, with headline sponsors University of the West of Scotland.  It’s on Friday 19th May 2017 at the Normandy Hotel Renfrew and guests will enjoy a fizz reception, 3-course meal with coffee and 8 rounds of celeb-hosted quiz.  The sports round will be hosted by St Mirren FC legend, Tony Fitzpatrick.

 Teams of maximum 10 guests will compete to win the much coveted RAMH Quiz Trophy, sponsored by Linstone Housing. And the best bit is that the event aims to raise £15,000 for local mental health services. Tickets are just £29.95 each with the early bird discount; book before Friday 31st March and save £50 per table. Bookings after this date will be charged at £35 per person, so reserve your place now or 0141 847 8900.

 The evening is perfect for corporate hospitality, team building, or socialising with friends. Dress is smart/casual (no denim, no trainers). It kicks off at 7pm, the trophy is presented at midnight and the dancing finishes at 1am. It’s a terrific evening of competition and fun. All guests are warmly welcomed and furthermore, you will be supporting recovery from mental ill health with RAMH.

An annual memorial service to commemorate those who have lost their lives to suicide will be held in Paisley next week.

The memorial tree

Renfrewshire support group Survivors of Bereavement by Suicide (SOBS) will be holding a short service open to all on Thursday 26 January.

The service will be attended by Renfrewshire Provost Anne Hall, Reverend Alan Birss and Deacon Jack Gallacher and will be held in the Marriage Suite of Renfrewshire House.

Renfrewshire’s Provost Anne Hall lays a remembrance wreath

Friends and relatives are invited to meet at the Marriage Suite from 3:15pm to collect a commemorative purple heart on which they can write a message to a loved one, if so desired.

At 3:30pm there will be a short set of readings followed by a procession to the memorial tree where the Provost will lay a wreath and light the tree.

The memorial tree was first dedicated in 2010 as a permanent memorial to those who have died through suicide and is believed to have been the first of its kind in Scotland.

A girl places a purple heart on the tree in remembrance

Following the service all those attending are cordially invited to join the Provost, the local SOBS support group and the Choose Life team for light refreshments in Paisley Abbey.

The service aims to provide an opportunity to remember those who have been lost while providing an arm of support to the survivors. It is an opportunity to connect with others who have faced a similar situation.

Provost Hall said: “The annual service provides those who have been affected by suicide a chance to commemorate their loved ones and also find support from others who have faced similar heartbreak.

“I would encourage anyone who feels this may benefit them to come along and join me at the service as we remember those lost too soon.”

The local support group meets on the last Wednesday of the month, 7:00pm-8:30pm, at the Wynd Centre, Paisley and new members are always welcome.

Lisa Aitken, Choose Life Resource Worker, said: “It is important that we remember those lost to suicide and also support those who have been affected by the loss of a loved one.

“The annual service provides an opportunity for people to meet others who have faced similar difficulties and all are welcome to attend.”

For more information contact the Choose Life Team on 0141 849 2200 or visit

If you are feeling suicidal, or you know someone that might be then please call one of the helpline numbers: Samaritan’s 116 123, Breathing Space 0800 83 85 87, RAMH First Crisis 0141 849 90 90 or 0500 829 093

Saturday was the most extraordinary afternoon/evening for RAMH as 35 willing volunteers took part in a Firewalk in order to raise vital funds for local mental health services.

Amanda walks on fire

The Firewalk took place at ProLife Fitness Centre in Paisley in partnership with Renfrewshire Sports Charity and Active Communities, and was hosted by Headstrong’s Brian Costello.

During the afternoon people heard about overcoming fear and channeling confidence into every part of their lives. In an incredible display of bravery, participants even snapped an arrow using their throats.

And then as darkness fell, the walkers began their preparation for walking 15 feet over glowing coals reaching temperatures of over 800C.

RAMH would like to thank each and every one of the inspirational walkers who demonstrated the utmost courage and commitment to supporting mental health by completing the firewalk. They have raised, Including Gift Aid, an incredible £6,500 for RAMH services, supporting local people recovering from mental ill health.

RAMH send sincerest thanks to everyone who made the event a huge success and for everyone’s amazing support! The money raised will promote recovery from mental ill health and empower people to build independent, fulfilled lives.