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Tagsa Uibhist - Slàinte agus Sunnd, the health and well-being charity, has set out its strategic priorities in a new 2022-2025 action plan as it confronts challenges finding both funding and people to do its work.

In addition to recommitting to their existing care and support work in the Uist community, a major priority will be strengthening the voluntary sector in the years ahead.

States Tagsa Uibhist: “ A key emphasis will be to help to strengthen the capacity and impact of the third sector in Uist through positive joint working.”

In addition to its current remit, the charity intends to further develop its work in employability and volunteering, social enterprise, sustainability, and climate emergency response.

While Tagsa has traditionally focused on seniors in the community and will continue to do so, they acknowledge that health and well-being affect people at every stage in life.

“For this reason, we will widen the reach of our services to include a focus on younger people,” Tagsa Uibhist states in their action plan.

But this will not be without challenges at a time when budgets are tight.

Comments Tagsa Uibhist: “We work hard to rise to the challenge of securing sufficient funding to be able to respond to growing needs in the community.

“However, at a time in which our costs have increased, overall local authority funding has been static. With increasing demands for our services, we need to constantly seek new sources of funding while making efficiency savings where possible.”

However, Tagsa Uibhist notes that funding is not the greatest challenge ahead; it’s the ability to recruit sufficient staff to meet rising needs.

“Day in, day out, we grapple with the reality of more people needing care and a dwindling social care workforce. This leads to delays in hospital discharges and more vulnerable people not receiving care,” Tagsa Uibhist remarks.

“This has been exacerbated by Brexit and by the relatively low rates of pay for social care staff relative to the demands of their role. This period ahead will bring changes in the landscape for our work, for example, the introduction of a new National Care Service.”

In the meantime, Tagsa Uibhist pledges to continue delivering high-quality services and promoting the resilience of clients and staff so that the local community will thrive in the face of growing challenges.

Tagsa Uibhist directly provides care and support, promotes independent living, and supports social participation and community wealth building. They also advocate on behalf of Uist community members.

Over the years, they have developed a strong track in delivering care at home, respite care, carer support, adult support, mental health and well-being support, and post-diagnostic support for people living with dementia. They also provide community transport and run community gardens.