We are grateful for the talented people who volunteer their time to our grant panels. Individually and collectively, they bring a wealth of experience and knowledge to the grant programmes. Below are the details of these volunteers.
Mary Craig OBE – Chair, Better Breaks Grants Panel: Chief Executive, Lloyds TSB Foundation for Scotland. Mary joined the Savings Bank as a teller and progressed to become a Senior Manager in Lloyds TSB Scotland, having responsibility for a cluster of 20 branches in the central belt. Mary left the Bank and joined the Foundation in 1997 as an Assessor and was appointed Deputy Chief Executive in July 2000. In January 2009 she was appointed Chief Executive. Mary is Convenor of Evaluation Support Scotland and Convenor of the Scotland Funders’ Forum. She is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Bankers in Scotland, a Fellow of the RSA and in the 2010 New Year’s Honours List Mary was awarded an OBE for services to the Voluntary Sector.
Andrew Findlay – Better Breaks Grants Panel: Andrew lives in the Scottish Borders and originally trained as a lawyer.
Over the last 18 years he has developed and managed Interest Link Borders, a befriending service for children, young people and adults with learning disabilities and their carers. Interest Link supports around 250 group and 1:1 befriending links each year and holds the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service.
Andrew is also a volunteer on the board of Befriending Networks (the national umbrella body for befriending services) and The Bridge (a Council for Voluntary Service).
Pauline Knox – Creative Breaks Grants Panel: Pauline lives in Moray and has worked in the social care field for the last 16 years. Previously a young carer and now a parent carer, Pauline has a history of working with carers across the voluntary and statutory sectors and has been the Moray Council lead officer for carers for the last 8 years. Pauline initiated development of SVQ 2 qualifications for carers in Moray and continues to develop innovative opportunities in health and social care services through collaborative partnerships with local and national organisations.
Jacqueline Law – Better Breaks Grants Panel: “As mum to a 15 year old girl with complex needs I know from first hand how challenging life can be, and what a difference having a break can be. My work experience has changed with my personal life. From being in a Managerial role in the Retail Sector I moved to Trading Standards Department. With the birth of my lovely girl I had to leave work. I became a volunteer representative with Contact a Family Scotland. I helped form Parents Inclusion Network in Dumfries and Galloway and remained in a line managerial role on that Board. I was also a Director of a Direct Payments support service and worked for Contact a Family as the Co-Ordinator for Parent Volunteers in Scotland. I know how vital breaks are and how getting it right can, literally, be the difference between a family being able to cope or not. I strongly believe the Panel’s role is to see that the grants go to organisations who can ensure Better Breaks will mean Better Lives.”
John Leggate – Creative Breaks Grants Panel: “ I am a former community development worker, and was the National Development Officer at Shared Care Scotland between 1993 and 2003. I’m now retired, and Chair the committee of the Princess Royal Trust for Carers Centre in Perth.”
Martha Lesler-Cribb – Better Breaks Grants Panel: “I have over 20 years of experience of working in the voluntary sector. I was a care assistant for adults with disabilities before joining the Augmentative and Alternative Communication Research Unit at the University of Stirling where I was involved in the development of the communication aid Talking Mats™. In 2002 I co-founded Pass IT On – an Edinburgh charity which adapts donated computers and gives them to people with disabilities – and I am still involved with this work on a voluntary basis. For five years I was the Quality Officer with Befriending Networks, where I developed the Befriending Code of Practice and Quality in Befriending. In April 2013 I moved to Evaluation Support Scotland where I am currently one of the Evaluation Support Managers, helping both funders and funded organisations demonstrate the impact of their work. At the moment my role has a particular focus on: Self-Directed Support; self-management; and involving service users in evaluation.”
Meg Lindsay – Better Breaks Grants Panel: As a social worker, Meg has had a varied career within health, social work services, voluntary and private sectors and academia, as well as six years on the Board of the Care Commission. She set up and managed both residential and family based short breaks services for children and adults, piloting new approaches. In 1994, she authored the ‘Patchwork Quilt’ report on short breaks services, which resulted in a sea-change in policy and pushed development forward. As Director of the Centre for Residential Child Care, she worked nationally and internationally to improve children’s services. Meg now provides consultancy and training in Britain and Ireland through her organisation ‘Managing Care Safely’
Raymond Jamieson – Creative Breaks Grants Panel: Raymond originally started as a volunteer with PKAVS young carers service 8 years ago. Since then Raymond has been employed at PKAVS as a part time support worker delivering a Duke of Edinburgh Bronze Award group, then as a full time support worker and he was appointed as the young carers coordinator 5 years ago. Since April 2015 Raymond has been PKAVS Carers Hub manager. This role involves the management of the young carers, young adult carers, adult carers and day services that operate within PKAVS. Raymond’s main hobbies away from work are traveling the world to see as many waterfalls as possible and watching his favourite football team let him down on a regular basis.
Su Millar – Creative Breaks Grants Panel: Su lives and works in Edinburgh and has had an eclectic work life working in education, research, youth development, conservation and now care. She has been a carer and supporter for her mother and son, which is now much reduced, with peaks and troughs. Su is also a Community Councillor and Trustee of the Queenserry House Trust. She brings an mix of experience and has, in addition, operated in and across different areas in the voluntary sector since 1988. Over the last 13 years she has been with LifeCare Edinburgh, developing and shaping new service offerings focused on carers and those older people they support(50+), with a range of registered care and other support services including day centres, outreach/in-reach, help at home, a community café and community centre, operates an Almoner Service for the Merchant Company of Edinburgh, and most recently, Vintage VIBES (Visiting and Befriending Service) in partnership with another charity, The Broomhouse Centre, due to come on stream later in the year. LifeCare Edinburgh holds Investing in Volunteers, and has PQASSO at Level 1 (Practical Quality Assurance Systems for Small Organisations), a Carers Engaged award for supporting staff at work who are themselves carers. Most recently LifeCare was awarded the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service.
Suzanne Munday – Creative Breaks & Better Breaks Grants Panel: I have worked in Edinburgh’s voluntary sector for 20 years, the last 10 of which as the Director of MECOPP (Minority Ethnic Carers of Older People Project). I am passionately committed towards ensuring that equalities and human rights are at the heart of health and social care in Scotland. More and more we are seeing hard evidence of the progress that has been made in supporting BME carers. The availability of appropriate and accessible short breaks and respite is essential to the health of the carer and person in receipt of care. This is as true for BME carers as it is for all carers. I am delighted to have been asked to participate on the Grants Advisory Panel and to have the opportunity to contribute to the development of new and innovative short breaks provision.
Margaret Petherbridge – Creative Breaks Grants Panel: My experience has been working within Community Care Services and in particular the implementation of Direct Payments Policy and managing a Short Breaks Bureau which arranges breaks for adults with disabilities and older people. I am currently chair of the ADSW (Association of Directors of Social Work) Self Directed Support Group. As part of this role I participate in the Scottish Government Self Directed Support Strategy Implementation Group. As a trained nurse I also have many years of experience of working within health.
Alan Scougal – Creative Breaks Grants Panel: After a career in the railway industry, Alan became involved with caring in 1997, when he came to Wester Ross (where he still lives) and began looking after his Father who was suffering from dementia. As a result he became – and remains – involved in carers’ issues locally, Highland-wide, and across Scotland. Currently he serves as a Board Member of Highland Community Care Forum, and on the Executive Committee of the Coalition of Carers in Scotland.
Frances Simpson – Creative Breaks Grants Panel: I have been with Support in Mind Scotland for 4 years, and have been working in the voluntary sector since 1991. Previous roles have been working mainly with carers and people with disabilities and for 5 years I worked for Samaritans, and was also a volunteer – which is where I realised that my vocation lay in supporting people affected by mental ill-health. I live near Dundee but work in Edinburgh so the commute is lengthy but the work is worth every mile.
Penny Stafford – Better Breaks Grants Panel: Penny lives in Edinburgh, and joins the GAP with a wealth of experience as a family carer and of involvement with the voluntary sector. She has a 19 year old disabled son with multiple support needs and also has experience of being a carer for family members affected by dementia, mental health and addiction issues. She has over 25 years of experience of working and volunteering within the third sector with a particular interest in advocacy and carer and service user involvement in policy and service development.
Keith Wimbles – Chair, Creative Breaks Grants Panel: Keith joined the Voluntary Action Fund in 2008 as Chief Executive. He has worked in the voluntary sector for eighteen years including with Glasgow Council for the Voluntary Sector and SCVO where he developed and managed a number of grant programmes and initiatives to support the community and voluntary sectors. Keith also has wide experience of European funding, transnational programmes and regeneration work. Prior to working in the voluntary sector, Keith worked in the private sector managing employment programmes across the UK to help people into employment, training and volunteering. In addition to leading the organisation, Keith represents VAF on a number of external groups. He is Convenor of the Scotland Funders’ Forum, Co-chair of the Volunteering Round Table and an associate member of the Scottish Grantmakers Group. Keith is also a trustee of Evaluation Support Scotland.
Scottish Government observers
Julie Robb, Carers Policy
Ruth Christie, Disabled Children and Young People
Kevin Fallon, Carers Policy
Don Williamson (Chief Executive, Shared Care Scotland)
Alison Stevenson (Short Breaks Fund Manager)
Gary Waddell (Short Breaks Fund Learning Exchange Manager)
Amanda Moffat (Short Breaks Fund Grants Officer)