City council wants your help to set it’s budget

When: Wednesday 21 August at 6pm 

Where: Craigroyston Community High School, 67 Pennywell Road

Sign up and join us for a cup of tea, a bite to eat and a chat with people in your area. We want to understand what services you use and value to help us spend and save in the right areas.

Help us shape your city’s budget and register for the session at

How would you spend £1 billion?  What Council services would you prioritise where you live and citywide? This sounds like a lot of money, but it has to go a long way to meet the needs of our growing population. We want to provide the best services we can with the limited resources we have.

The Council are hosting open sessions where citizens will be invited to take part in group discussions with other people in your area, designed to raise awareness of where the Council invests its resources now.

So, what do you think we can do differently? What services are used and valued by you, your family, your community and fellow Edinburgh residents?

If you are interested in having a cuppa and a bite to eat with people in your area, and giving us your views about the future of Council services, please register using the link below.

Please note, spaces are limited and will be allocated on a first come first served basis.

Port of Leith Housing Association gets seal of approval for involving its customers

Port of Leith Housing Association has been awarded silver accreditation for excellence in customer participation and engagement by the Tenant Participation Advisory Service (TPAS) Scotland. Continue reading Port of Leith Housing Association gets seal of approval for involving its customers

First steps towards a Citizens Assembly

The Scottish Government has proposed a Citizens’ Assembly on Scotland’s future, providing an opportunity for greater citizen engagement on issues facing the country. It’s early days, but an event in Edinburgh last week gave grounds for optimism. Continue reading First steps towards a Citizens Assembly

Citizens Assembly to help shape Scotland’s future

First step to set up new Assembly to help shape Scotland’s future.

The process of establishing the new Citizens’ Assembly to explore some of the major challenges facing Scotland has begun.

A contractor is being sought to randomly select 120 members of the public to serve on the Assembly. The individuals will be broadly representative of Scotland’s adult population in terms of age, gender, socio-economic class, ethnic group, geography and political attitudes.

The Assembly will consider three broad issues:

* what kind of country should be

* how can Scotland best overcome challenges, including those arising from Brexit

* what further work is required to enable people to make informed choices about the future of Scotland

Constitutional Relations Secretary Michael Russell said: “This is the first time a Citizens’ Assembly has been used in Scotland and will bring together a wide range of ordinary people from across our country in a genuine attempt to reach consensus on the issues that we face. Similar models have been used successfully in countries including Ireland, Canada, Australia and Poland.

“It is a bold idea and one I hope everyone, whatever their political view, can embrace. I believe we all want the best for Scotland and if we have learnt anything from Brexit it is the need to make space for people to engage with information and to exchange different views.”

The Citizens’ Assembly is one strand of the Scottish Government’s three pronged approach to chart a distinctive course for Scotland. The others are the establishment of a legal framework providing the option for a referendum and cross-party talks to identify areas of agreement on constitutional change.

The Scottish Government’s approach is based on lessons learned from a range of Citizens’ Assembly initiatives.

Members will be identified by early September, with the Assembly meeting on six weekends between the autumn and Spring 2020.

Assembly members will receive a gift of thanks of £200 per weekend to recognise their time and contribution. Travel, accommodation and other reasonable costs, such as child care, will also be covered.

MSPs, MPs, MEPs, councillors and members of the House of Lords, political party staff, public appointees and senior public and civil servants will be ineligible to sit on the Assembly, as will representatives and officials of relevant advocacy groups.

An announcement on the convenership of the Assembly will be made by Constitutional Secretary Michael Russell shortly.



Forth & Inverleith Voluntary Sector Forum date set

Monday 18th February at 9:30am, Royston Wardieburn Community Centre

Dear All,

Apologies for the delay in organising another forum after our meeting at the end of last year.

We plan to hold our next one on:

Monday 18th Feb, 9.30-11.30

F34 at Royston Wardieburn Community Centre

Please find attached the report from the meeting we held in November and I will send around the agenda a week before our meeting – please let me know if there is anything you would like included.

Best wishes,

Katherine Anderson

Development Worker: Children, Young People and Families Network and Voluntary Sector Forums

T: 0131 555 912

FIVSF animate report 22nd Nov

Young people invited to set out their future hopes for the Scottish Parliament

Young people from across Scotland are being asked to send a letter to the Scottish Parliament setting out their hopes and aspirations for the institution over the next 20 years. Continue reading Young people invited to set out their future hopes for the Scottish Parliament

Opportunities for older people to have their say

The Scottish Government are developing a new Older People’s Framework in 2019 and the Scottish Older People’s Assembly have been asked to help gather views to feed into this process. 

In an effort to gather as wide a range of views as possible, we have produced a questionnaire which we hope you can circulate to your networks, feature in newsletters and encourage as many people as possible to complete (within the limitations of the timescales that we have been set, which we acknowledge are very tight).

The questionnaire is available online at

The deadline for survey completion is Wednesday, 30th January 2019.

 We will also be holding an engagement event on Monday 4th February 2019, 10am-3:30pm at COSLA Conference Centre, Haymarket, EH12 5BH.

Places are limited and will be prioritised for SOPA members but if you are interested please register on the Eventbrite website and we will confirm availability. 

 Please follow this link to the Eventbrite website for more information and to reserve your place. 

If you have any queries, please contact Caroline Clark on the details below. 

Caroline Clark | Scottish Older People’s Assembly – Co-ordinator| Eric Liddell Centre, 15 Morningside Road, Edinburgh, EH10 4DP | 0131 357 1277 |

The Scottish Government are currently preparing a new National Framework for Older People in Scotland. This Conference has been organised by the Scottish Older People’s Assembly to give members an opportunity to come together and make a contribution to the development of this framework.

The event will focus on the following key objectives:

  • providing an inclusive opportunity for older people to share their ideas and experiences
  • identifying and gathering examples of the positive contributions made by older people
  • identifying barriers faced by older people in a range of different aspects of life and ideas of how to break these down.
  • gathering ideas of how to combat negative perceptions and stereotypes commonly held about older people.

Please join us to share your views, ideas and experiences.

Due to limited space, we ask that a maximum of two representatives per organisation attend. If you would like additional tickets please contact Caroline Clark on 0131 3571277

If you have any dietary or access requirements that will allow you to participate fully in this event, please let us know.

Democracy Matters: sign up for discussion event

Working together, Community Development Alliance Scotland, The Scottish Community Development Centre and the Poverty Alliance invite you to discuss the next phase of the Local Governance Review and  share your ideas about how local democracy could change.

Join us for the morning, chat to us over lunch and learn how you can help others have their voice and make a difference.

  • The Studio, 67 Hope Street , Glasgow
  • 10 am til 2pm
  • 9th August 2018

Register here >> 

Democracy Matters

The Scottish Government has launched the next phase of its Local Governance Review, inviting people to join a conversation called ‘Democracy Matters’.

The campaign asks five key questions about how decisions should be made at a more local level. It asks whether communities, of place or identity, should have more control of decisions and what those might be. It also asks how this should look and what new or existing decision-making processes could be used.

The Local Governance Review was launched earlier in the year aims to find out what changes are needed to encourage a more local, participatory and inclusive democracy in Scotland.

A short animation summaries the review and the five questions being asked:

“In modern Scotland power must work in a way that involves and benefits everyone. To get this right, we will review how responsibilities and resources can be shared across national and local government in a way that delivers the greatest benefit to Scotland’s different places. However, the starting point must be with our citizens and the power and potential within our communities themselves.”

The review encourages people to hold conversations in their communities to discuss Democracy Matters and includes a community engagement fund where groups can apply for £100 – £300 to help make conversations happen. They have also published guidance about how the discussion might work and how it could be facilitated.

The review of local governance was set out in the Scottish Government’s 2017-18 programme for government and will be part of the forthcoming Local Democracy Bill

You can download the report and view more information on the Scottish Government website here.

Register for the event here >>