OPAL West Lothian

Cyrenians OPAL (Opportunities for Active Lives) works with people aged 60+ promoting active and fulfilling lives, creating and enriching communities which empower all to remain independent, living at home and socially connected. 

The service is delivered by a team of dedicated, trained volunteers who offer encouragement, companionship and support to help people engage in social, leisure and community activities.

Our service is funded through a collaboration with West Lothian Council, West Lothian Health and Social Care Partnership, and NHS Lothian.

If you’re interested in becoming an OPAL Volunteer, please call us on 01506 815 815 or email opal@cyrenians.scot for further information.

Who do we work with?

 We support people of age 60+ who live in West Lothian.

Community Groups

OPAL supports over 20 community groups throughout West Lothian open to anyone 60 and above.  These groups are designed to bring people together, foster friendships, have fun and to get people involved in their local community.  It is known that social connections are essential for health and well-being at all ages and may be especially important for promoting health in later life. 

Types of groups:

  • Social groups
  • Activity groups
  • Walking groups
  • Singing group
  • Music group
  • Online group

At groups, participants can enjoy a variety of experiences ranging from: live music from entertainers, gentle exercise, quizzes, games, speakers, walks and opportunities to learn/develop new skills.

Groups foster a sense of belonging, strengthen social connections, and empower individuals to actively engage and contribute to their community.

One-to-One Support

The One-to-One service is accessed via a referral by a health professional or individuals can self-refer.

It is a time-limited, confidence-building service where clients are matched with a volunteer for a period of typically 6 – 9 months. To ensure the best support, we match clients with like-minded volunteers who share common interests. The service supports clients in progressing towards a specific personal goal through: 

  • Visits at home
  • Friendly chats on the phone
  • Short local outings to shops or a cafe
  • Confidence-building walks
  • Attending local community groups

One-to-One support allows individuals to build their confidence, link into their local community, learn new or develop existing skills and improve wellbeing. 

Digital Support

Digital skills, whether on a tablet, smartphone or PC, are becoming increasingly important in everyday life.  We provide tailored tuition to build confidence and ability in using digital devices, either a group setting or on a one-to-one basis. 

The OPAL Referral Process
OPAL referral process image 3

OPAL Volunteers

The OPAL service is provided by a dedicated team of volunteers, who are essential to ensure we deliver our services successfully. Volunteers take on various roles, including leading or assisting groups, befriending and driving.

All our volunteers undergo a Disclosure Scotland PVG check, are supervised by an OPAL Coordinator and receive a full programme of training including specialist skills such as Falls Awareness, Sighted Guidance (from My Guide), Mental Health First Aid and Dementia Friends from Alzheimer Scotland.

How to access our services

To find out more about using OPAL West Lothian, please call us on 01506 815 815 or email opal@cyrenians.scot. You can also find the service on Facebook at www.facebook.com/OPALCyrenians 

MIST (Memory Information Support Team)

MIST image

MIST (Memory Information Support Team) is our new West Lothian based partnership project which offers early support for those caring for someone experiencing memory issues who hasn’t yet received a diagnosis on their memory or are is awaiting support or input from the memory treatment service.  

The MIST partnership project is our response to the growing waiting lists for diagnosis and pre-diagnosis support for people with dementia and their carers in West Lothian (WL). Earlier support can enable people to stay well for longer, increase awareness, and help carers and loved ones make adjustments to improve their quality of life.  

Early practical support can also enable carers to manage their role and live better lives - allowing them to access the support and information they need, and connect with other people who will understand them.  

Who is this service for?

Those who care for someone experiencing memory issues (impaid carers/family members) who are awaiting support or input from the memory treatment service or seeking a diagnosis around their memory.

What can MIST provide? 

  • Free practical information and advice
  • Emotional Wellbeing support and someone to talk to
  • Peer support groups
  • Creative and social groups
  • Training

How do I access this service?

  • Self referral
  • Professional referrals from the Memory Treatment Service (referral form available for professionals on request)

Who provides this service?

Alongside Cyrenians OPAL (opportunities Active Lives), this project is run by Carers of West Lothian in partnership with the Food Train, Generaton Arts and NHS Lothian's OPCMHT/Memory Treatment ServiceMemory Treatment Service

To self refer or get in touch with a query, please contact:

Telephone: 01506 448 000
Email: office@carers-westlothian.com
Post: Sycamore House, Quarrywood Court, Livingston, EH54 6AX

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