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A party and a parliamentary motion have formed the celebrations for Action for Children Eilean Siar, as they marked their quarter century last week.

Hosting a small celebration at their Bayhead offices on Thursday (5 October), staff reflected on how much had changed over 25 years.

Children’s services manager Valerie Russell said: "The day went well with lots of partner agencies dropping in and meeting with staff.

“It was good to have time to reflect on the last 25 years and see how much the services had developed, grown and changed.

“Everyone appeared to enjoy the day. After speeches from Jack Libby, Comhairle nan Eilean Siar’s head of children's services and Fiona Steel, the national director of Action for Children Scotland, the buffet was eaten and time was spent catching up with colleagues.

“Here's to the next 25 years in the Outer Hebrides!"

Action for Children run a variety of services throughout the Western Isles, including Hillcrest children’s home in Stornoway, a service for children and young people affected by domestic violence and wellbeing services in all four of the islands’ secondary schools.

Over 120 young people are supported each month, in addition to parents and carers and there are AfC workers in Lewis, Harris, Uist and Barra.

The charity’s presence in the islands was also marked at Holyrood on Friday, when Na h-Eileanan an Iar MSP Alasdair Allan tabled a motion congratulating Action for Children on 25 years of vital service in his constituency.

In the motion, which was supported by 19 MSPs, he suggested that the parliament: “Notes that the charity’s first two services started in 1998 on the Isle of Lewis, firstly Hillcrest, a service that provides care for children and young people who cannot stay at home and enables short breaks for children with additional needs, and secondly Eilean Siar Assessment and Therapy Unit, which offers a range of support and advice to children with additional support needs and their families to sustain the continued development of the children.”

He also noted that Parliament: “Understands that this service is considered to be the first in Scotland to have been fully funded by an NHS board, namely NHS Western Isles; acknowledges that, over the last 25 years, a total of seven services have been established by Action for Children to provide support to children, young people and families from Lewis to Barra (and) commends the lasting partnership working Action for Children has developed with Comhairle nan Eilean Siar, NHS Western Isles and the Corra Foundation to deliver these crucial services across Na h-Eileanan an Iar.”

Dr Allan’s motion concluded by wishing the staff continued success in the future as they provide support and care for over 100 children, young people and families in the Western Isles.

The pictures show Action for Children’s Fiona Steel congratulating staff on their anniversary, children’s services manager Valerie Russell and senior business support officer Marianne Ross – who have both been with the charity since it started in Stornoway – and Jane Maltman of the CnES social work, fostering and adoption team with Stacey Glenday of Action for Children, celebrating at the party.