Welcome to the Orkney Information Hub, we are currently working on this section and will be continuously updating the information listed. Please click on the links below for further information:

Coronavirus - guidance, support information and resources

Orkney Community Directory

Enhancing Wellbeing in Our Island Communities - Updated June 2020

Growing Older in Orkney

Children & Young Peoples Service Directory 2018

Adult Service Directory 2020

Orkney Health Walks


Coronavirus - guidance, support information and resources available 

VAO are working hard to keep resources current these are now split into two headings support for the public and support for organisations. In this information hub we hope you will find what you are looking for. If you would like information added to these guides then please email ingrid.berry@vaorkney.org.uk 
Covid-19 - Orkney Coronavirus Community Support Hub - Click here for full information 
A call centre to provide essential information and support to the most vulnerable people in Orkney has been established. This applies to those who are NHS shielded and also those who do not have family or existing community support and cannot get online and who are over 70, disabled, require the support of mental health services, are pregnant or receive a flu jab for health reasons.
 Are you facing Redundancy in Orkney, Partnership Action for Continuing Employment (PACE) is the Scottish Government’s initiative dedicated to helping individuals and employers with the advice and support they need when faced with redundancy.  As with every local authority in Scotland, Orkney has an active PACE Partnership. Full details are available here 

'Volunteer Opportunities - Covid-19 Support' - If you would like to register to volunteer, click here

Support for the Public

Coronavirus  -  Local Businesses offering delivery and/or takeaway services listed in areas and split between groceries and food establishments. New section just added for general businesses that are offering delivery to ,you home, ie books, pamper packs, deep clean services.

Coronavirus – Local Organisational Support information -  Links to organisation's’ that can offer support locally and Third Sector local organisations that are closed but still available to offer advice over the telephone and over emails. 

Coronavirus - National Organisations support information (including vunerable group websites, health and wellbeing and  general support  information not health related, i.e top up meters)

Useful links for things to do from home that are free, At a glance, what you can find in this guide: Activities, Arts & Culture, Educational and How to links, Fitness for the home and Science

Orkney CV Mutual Groups for each area

The Orkney Islands Council Coronavirus information pages provide the latest updates and links for, the public, businesses, council staff and the third sector.


NHS Orkney - Keep up to date with what is happening 

" home-related services (plumbers, electricians, businesses that can supply white goods and materials etc) that can be called in an emergency"

Orkney Community Directory – Full Search Facility to all local community groups

Volunteering you can do from home 

Guidance - Volunteering and claiming benefits - What to do if you claim benefits and do voluntary work

Volunteer Guidance - BRITISH RED CROSS Volunteering Covid-19 (Coronavirus) Service Activity Including PPE Instructions available to view here

Ready Scotland - Helping in your community -The information explains how you can provide essential support safely.

Support for Organisations 

Coronavirus - Very useful guidance ,support information and updates links (Covers General Guidance, support and information, NHS/Public Health information, Volunteer Guidance and Working From home)

OIC - Community resilience fund application 

Available Funding and Business Support During this Time

Coronavirus - Impact on Third Sector Services Survey 

VAO Current Working Arrangements

The Orkney Islands Council Coronavirus information pages provide the latest updates and links for, the public, businesses, council staff and the third sector.

Business Gateway - Virtual & Local Business Support – Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic - Business Gateway is being responsive and reactive to the needs and challenges Scottish businesses face due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19). Below you will find a list of free business resources that may be useful to you at this time.  Or check out their facebook page where they are doing little sessions on different business topics 

The role and financial sustainability of third sector organisations across Scotland – Letter to Scottish Government from TSI Scotland Chief Officers


The recently updated Children's Services Directory is proving popular with parents and carers, as well as professionals working with children and families. A comprehensive easy to read booklet, the directory gives details of all the services available to children and young people in Orkney. Contact VAO for your copy of the Directory or view online here.

young people in orkney

Welcome to the updated version of the Orkney Community Directory.

The Directory provides a comprehensive list of community and voluntary groups in Orkney along with other organisations and services that may be of interest to you.

Please note that the Search facility is currently unavailable at the moment, please use this copy in the interim. 

Please contact us if you encounter any problems. We are keen to have as many local organisations listed as possible.

If you would like your organisations details to be listed feel free to contact us on enquiries@vaorkney.org.uk Please remember to update us if the contact details for your listing change.

Enhancing Wellbeing in Our Island Communities

(funded by the Aspiring Communities Fund and led by VAO)

 In 2018 VAO in collaboration with Highlands and Islands Enterprise, 7 development trusts and Robert Gordon University commissioned research into community led care in the non linked isles. The research was carried out by Rosie Alexander and the report recommended that the isles communities continue to build and extend existing community services and identify the potential for bringing new services to the isles.

As a result a project has been co-produced with the above partners and Papay Community Council. The islands involved are: Hoy, Rousay, Egilsay and Wyre, Shapinsay, Stronsay and Sandy. The aim of the project is to enhance the wellbeing of older people living on these islands. A project manager and evaluator have been appointed and are employed by VAO. Island wellbeing co-ordinators have been appointed in each island and are managed by each island Development Trust.

The co-ordinators are working hard to produce delivery plans for their individual islands and these plans will be publicly available in the autumn of 2019. Some of the activities already being carried out include organising a dementia friendly workshop on Rousay, providing an outlet for small daily living aids on Hoy and Walls with the support of Selbro, supporting isles initiatives such as setting up Men’s Sheds and looking at ways to encourage the use of existing island assets such as the Healthy Living Centres. They have also provided crucial support to the Community Led Support team to set up workshops in Sanday.

Project Update June 2020

Extending the Reach of the Enhancing Wellbeing In Our Islands Communities Project

The Enhancing Wellbeing Project has been given the opportunity through funding from Aspiring Communities Fund, to continue focussing on the wellbeing of people living in the non-linked islands of Hoy, Shapinsay, Sanday, Stronsay and Rousay, Egilsay and Wyre. This project starting in March 2020 will extend the reach of the original Enhancing Wellbeing in our Island communities (EWOIC) Project, to address other areas of inequality. The existing project team can continue and will develop by building on existing relationships to facilitate solutions to issues of hidden poverty and disadvantage which were emerging during the initial EWOIC project. In their short time in existence the co-ordinator roles have become a safety net to the primary care offered on island. These community-based posts are in a unique position to galvanise local action to find solutions to inequality of access to wellbeing services on the isles.

This funding will enable our unique partnership to progress essential work, and will:-

· Create opportunities for new skills and employment

· Enable the co-production of solutions to the inequalities experienced by individual and groups across the participating islands. Some of these inequalities are already known as they have been highlighted during the EWIOIC project and have yet to be addressed as they were outwith the scope of the initial project.

· Support communities to find their own solution to their own problems

· Demonstrate the significant benefits of early engagement with communities and taking a bottom-up approach

· Have the potential to be a model that can be adapted to address similar problems in other areas

· Demonstrate additionality through the involvement and commitment of several agencies to establish and monitor the chosen solution

· Establish and maintain an innovative partnership between development trusts, HIE, VAO, RGU and Orkney Health and Care which will lay the foundation for sustainable approaches to community challenges

· Build on, or redesign, existing local service provision to provide support to meet local demand and local need and to tackle inequalities in a local context.

· Enable communities to be involved with other partners in planning and delivering services to meet local need

This project aims to deliver significant benefits to island communities. The end result aims to ensure that people are supported to access early interventions thereby reducing the need for statutory interventions. This project will take a holistic, intergenerational approach, which will utilise the full breadth of the community to address issues of inequality, and in particular low income groups, lone parents and workless households.

For more information about the project please contact Rosalind Aitken, Project Manager on rosalind.aitken@vaorkney.org.uk


 enhanced well being

Final Report on Community Led Care

Apprendices to the Community Led Care Report

Enhanced Well-Being Delivery Plan 
















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