Highland Children and Young People Allied Health Professionals (AHP) Enquiry Line

Every Tuesday between 2 pm and 5 pm there will be Allied Health Professionals available to answer questions you may have.

Allied Health Professionals are Occupational Therapists, Physiotherapists, Dietitians, and Speech and Language Therapists.

The enquiry line is for all young people, parents, carers and professionals in The Highland Council area.

The telephone number of the enquiry line is 07785477686.

Croileagan Inbhir Narainn (Nairn Gaelic Playgroup) – Enrolment Information

Enrolment week for childcare places at Croileagan Inbhir Narainn commences Monday 25th February and concludes Friday 1st March 2019. Please see the poster below for more information:

#lovefromCALA – a charity fundraising day organised by Care and Learning Alliance

Care and Learning Alliance (CALA), have this week launched #lovefromCALA, a brand new initiative which encourages children, families, carers, staff, volunteers and partners of CALA to join our fundraising event on Valentine’s Day: 14th February 2019.

The Archie Foundation and Mikeysline were selected at CALAs annual conference in September 2018, as local charities providing support across Highland, and all proceeds raised on the day will be split between the two organisations.

We would like to invite you to join us on the 14th of February to raise funds for these amazing charities. Anyone who is interested will receive a supporter’s pack with all the information you need regarding the day, as well as a couple of fundraising ideas. We have left the choice open to the participants as to how you would like to raise funds.

We only ask that you show your support on the day by using our hashtag #lovefromCALA if you are posting on Twitter or Facebook, etc.

To obtain your supporters pack please email: [email protected] or call 01463 222569. If you require any further information or have any questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch.

The day and activities are not only about raising money for relevant charities but also about being part of Team CALA, with a shared cause and project for the day. Please join us in showing our support for the other amazing charities and third sector organisations in the Highlands working hard for children and families!

If you cannot fundraise yourself on the day please feel free to check in with your local CALA services and enjoy their activities. We at Inverness Office would like to warmly invite you into our Kintail House office for a coffee and cake on the day while we carry out our office-based fundraising.

Safe Strong and Free are looking for Board Directors

The following blog update comes from Safe Strong and Free, a Highland charity which aims to reduce the vulnerability of young children to abuse and assault.


We are seeking to recruit Directors to the Board of SSF.

Directors provide direction to the charity and support to the management team.

To ensure our programme encompasses the views of children, we would be delighted to appoint a Director from a nursery in Highlands/Moray. This role would involve representing children’s views at Board meetings.

No experience necessary, just an interest in keeping all children safe from abuse and assault.

Please enquire to [email protected]

The health impacts of screen time

The amount of screen time children should be allowed has been a hotly debated subject in recent years. A recent study by the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health has examined some of the issues around screen time and gathered information from children and young people. 

The question of ‘how much screen time is too much?‘ can depend on a variety of factors, such as whether it impacts a child’s sleep schedule, whether screen time interferes with a family’s plans, and what the child is playing or watching on the screen.

The report suggests parents should “negotiate screen time limits with their children based upon the needs of an individual child, the ways in which screens are used and the degree to which use of screens appears to displace (or not) physical and social activities and sleep“.

Learn more about this subject by reading ‘5 things parents should know about screen time‘ on the Parent Zone website. Or read the full report by the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health. 

Parentline – a support service for anyone caring for or concerned about a child

Parentline is a support service run by Scotland’s National Children’s Charity – Children 1st. If you’re worried about something that has happened to you or your child, would like advice or support, or simply want to talk, Parentline can support you. They will listen with kindness, help think things through and support you in whatever is affecting your family.

If you work with parents, families or kinship carers, you may wish to promote Parentline for anyone in need of a bit of extra support. 

There are a number of ways you can contact Parentline: 

For more information, please visit https://www.children1st.org.uk/help-for-families/parentline-scotland/

The Child Protection Toolkit

The Highland Child Protection Committee’s ‘Child Protection Toolkit‘ is an invaluable resource for third sector organisations and community groups in Highland.

Some of the topics covered in the toolkit include:

  • Recruitment of Staff and Volunteers
  • Protection of Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Act 2007
  • Transporting children and young people
  • Photographing, videoing and filming
  • Dealing with a Child Protection Situation
  • A sample Child Protection Policy

There are two versions of the toolkit available to download:

Download the CP Toolkit for Third Sector Organisations.

Download the CP Toolkit for Community Groups.

If your workplace is involved in the care of children, it is highly recommended you download the toolkit, and keep it on your computer to act as a reference for child protection matters.

Upcoming training: Needs, Connections and Development

Care and Learning Alliance are pleased to announce our upcoming training: ‘Needs, Connections and Development’. 

Sessions will be taking place in Inverness and Elgin, both in March 2019. Please see our course flyer for more information. 

Click here to book online.

Book your place by filling out our online booking form, or telephone Rebecca on 01349 866749

Out to Play – Practical guidance for creating outdoor play experiences in early learning and childcare

This comprehensive guidance is full of useful tips, practical ideas and links to examples to support us to consider ways to ensure we provide children with the benefits of everyday outdoor play. This publication builds on and links with existing guidance including eg. My World Outdoors, Loose Parts Play, Building the Ambition, Pre-Birth to Three, CfE, The Continuous Learning Framework and many more.

Click here to download the guidance. 

SQA Early Learning and Childcare Resource

The SQA (Scottish Qualifications Authority) has developed a website that offers free resources designed to support learners studying for Early Learning and Childcare qualifications. 

You can access the website by visiting: http://www.elcresource.co.uk/

There are sections on early baby, outdoor nurseries, pre-school, care experience, as well as information on careers in ELC. 

Lochinver ELC hunt for the perfect Christmas tree

The following blog post was submitted by the staff at Lochinver ELC: 


The fun and learning opportunities when you go searching for a Christmas tree are endless.

The children first had to think about where the tree would go and measure the space…. “with what?” Remembering the big number was tricky but it was the same height as Jane’s shoulders. Saws are sharp and dangerous but not our folding saw! Which tree to choose? Children learnt a new word “evergreen” and discovered some had “needles” not leaves. We even made up a new song!

Of course, when we returned, the tree was hung upside down the old traditional way!

Merry Christmas!

Click on the image below to watch a video of Lochinver’s Christmas Tree hunt! 

“Food Matters” – A new resource from the Care Inspectorate (featuring Junior World)

Food Matters is a resource by the Care Inspectorate that highlights examples of good practice from across the ELC sector in relation to food and nutrition. The resource compliments NHS Health Scotland’s ‘Setting the Table‘, the nutritional guidance and food standards for the ELC sector. 

You can view the resource on the Care Inspectorate website by clicking here.

The guidance features case studies from ELC settings across Scotland, including Junior World in Nairn. 

Here’s an excerpt from the guidance, in which Jayne Macintosh, Junior World Manager, talks about their gardening project: 

“Donations of seeds, bulbs and resources for the garden led to them growing produce. Children
delighted in growing their own strawberries and commented that they tasted better than any they had
eaten before. The gardening project expanded to include growing radishes, cucumbers, and tomatoes
as well as herbs and flowers. The children now take extra delight in ensuring that Jayne, the manager,
always has fresh flowers in her office. They also show their parents what they have been doing, taking
real pride in their achievements.”