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Services for Older People Award 2022

Harlawhill Day Centre

For 30 years the Harlawhill centre has been the go-to place for older people in the East Lothian community in need of advice, guidance and assistance. The charity has fostered a strong sense of community spirit supporting older people, those living with dementia and offering respite to carers.

The popular Harlawhill Day Centre in Prestonpans has won Age Scotland's Services for Older People national award.

The award, sponsored by PSR Scotland, was presented at Age Scotland's national awards ceremony in Glasgow.

The team, from the manager to the drivers, are described as natural carers for whom nothing is too much trouble. From fundraising at the weekend to providing emergency respite at short notice, the Harlawhill team work tirelessly for their clients.

The centre’s closure due to Covid was a blow for the older people of Prestonpans but the staff continued to offer support through care, friendship, practical and emotional assistance for those in need.

The team also organised a network of telephone buddies to relieve the boredom of lockdown and ensure everyone had someone to talk to. The grateful feedback from clients, families and carers showed how important these services were.

Reopening the centre in 2021 was a landmark moment and the team continues to enrich the lives of older people throughout the community.

Ewan McMillan, trustee of the Harlawhill Day Centre, said:

"It is a great honour and a privilege to have won this year’s Age Scotland award for Services for Older People. As a small charity in the care sector it is always rewarding to receive praise for the work we do, but to receive it from your peers is even more special.

"We do what we do for our community and could not do it without the support from the community of Prestonpans, who have been so generous to us over the years. This award will propel us to continue in our efforts, with renewed vigour, to support and care for our elderly members who mean the world to us. Thank you so much, from everyone at Harlawhill."

Brian Sloan, chief executive of Age Scotland, said:

"I am delighted to present the Services for Older People award to the hugely popular Harlawhill Day Centre.

"It's clear how important the centre is to older people in the area, creating a tight-knit community and lifelong friendships.

"During the Covid pandemic the team stepped in to support older people through the challenging times and the reunion once the centre reopened was a real cause for celebration.

"Many congratulations to the Harlawhill Day Centre, worthy winners of the Services for Older People award."

Award Sponsor: PSR Scotland

PSR Scotland is a joint safeguarding initiative supported by Scottish & Southern Electricity Networks, SP Energy Networks, SGN and Scottish Water to promote the Priority Services Register (PSR) for vulnerable households across Scotland.

The Priority Service Register is free to join and helps utilities provide tailored support should your electricity, gas or water supply go off in an emergency as well looking after you during their planned work.

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