Training events and courses offered directly by Health Promotion, or in conjunction with other agencies, are available to anyone with an interest in health and health issues, such as health professionals, workplaces, community and voluntary groups, and students, but this will be clearly stated.

Tailored training and education can be provided to parents, youth groups and community groups, on a variety of health topics on request. The following list of training is not exhaustive and other training is held throughout the year.

The majority of training dates are yet to be confirmed.  If you are interested in finding out more about a course or to reserve your place, please contact the Health Promotion Department tel. (01851) 762017 or e-mail by clicking here.

Due to a number of the following courses relating to more than one health topic, training is listed alphabetically.

Nb. Certain training listed below may not necessarily relate to Health Promotion, but is advertised to promote/increase awareness and attendance.


Scottish Drugs Forum: ‘Legal Highs’ Training – February 2016

The Outer Hebrides Alcohol and Drug Partnership (ADP) have enlisted the Scottish Drugs Forum (SDF) to conduct New Psychoactive Substances (NPS) ‘legal highs’ training in Stornoway, Balivanich and Barra in February 2016.

The training allows attendees to effectively respond to, treat, and engage with people using these emerging substances by being able to:

  • identify the key NPS in use and emerging trends
  • name the seven categories of drugs which apply to NPS
  • recall the legality of the key substances in use and legislation affecting NPS
  • name the typical effects and side effects of the key substances in use
  • identify effective techniques and strategies to work with users including harm reduction.

SDF delivered NPS training in Stornoway and Balivanich in February 2015 and both courses were well attended which showed a real thirst locally to understand NPS more clearly.

We are delighted to be able to offer this training on Barra also in 2016.

NPS use has been on the increase in recent years and as NPS are easily available on the internet the communities of the Outer Hebrides have the potential to be affected with NPS just as much as the rest of the country.

For further information about the HBC training, please contact: Ruth Grant, ADP Administrative Assistant, tel. 01851 762022 or email: 


Alcohol & Drug Training for Managers

The Scottish Centre for Healthy Working Lives in partnership with Alcohol Focus Scotland and the Scottish Drugs Forum has developed a half-day training programme which is designed to give information and guidance to employers to help deal with workplace issues on both alcohol and drugs.

The sessions will enable employers and managers to create a greater awareness around alcohol and drugs in their workplace and provide them with the knowledge and skills to deal with issues as they arise. On completion of this course, participants will have:

  • Increased knowledge of the impact of alcohol and drugs on the workforce.
  • Increased knowledge of all forms of substances and their impact on the individual and workplace.
  • Increased awareness of the legal framework within which to implement workplace alcohol and drugs policies.
  • Increased awareness of development and implementation of alcohol and drugs policies.
  • Increased confidence in dealing with staff issues around alcohol and drugs.

The course will be delivered by Alcohol Focus Scotland trainers and co-ordinated by the Healthy Working Lives team.  For further information or to reserve a place contact Norma Macleod, Healthy Working Lives Advisor, tel. (01851) 762017.

‘Are You Ready for Sex?’ Training

This one day course is aimed at anyone who works with young people and has some experience in sexual health work and child protection. The training and manual has been designed to be used with young people in informal youth settings however use is not restricted to these settings.  As this course is funded by NHS Western Isles, there is no fee for participants.  The training programme aims to:

  • Increase participants’ knowledge, skills and confidence in delivering sexual health and relationships work within the youth work settings.
  • Provide participants with a tool kit of practical methods and activities to encourage young people to delay sexual activity,  to explore  risks and think about how to keep safe
  • Provide participants with a ‘ready to use’ manual that contains over 16 fun and participatory session plans covering issues such as acceptable or unacceptable behaviour, resisting pressure, readiness for sex, internet safety, sexuality and alcohol

You will also receive a copy of the ‘Are You Ready For Sex?’ manual and a small quantity of ‘Are You Ready For Sex?’ leaflets.

For further information or to reserve a place contact Isabel Steele, HIV/AIDS & Sexual Health Officer, tel. 01870 603 156 or email:

ASIST Suicide Intervention Training:

In the same way that skills are needed for physical first aid, ASIST training develops the skills necessary for suicide first aid. It helps participants to become more ready, willing and able to recognise and intervene effectively to help people at risk of suicide.

ASIST is a two-day intensive, interactive and practice-dominated course aimed at providing people with the skills to spot the risk of suicide and provide immediate help to those at risk. ASIST is suitable for anyone and participants come from all sectors and backgrounds.

The course is free and participants are asked to bring a packed lunch.  For further information or to register, please contact Alison MacDonald, Senior Health Promotion Officer, tel. 01870 602588 or email

Child Protection; Western Isles Underage Sex Protocol Training

Would you know what to do if a young person under 16 disclosed to you that they were sexually active?

The Western Isles Underage Sex Protocol is a web-based resource that enables staff across all agencies to deal more effectively and appropriately with young people aged 13-15 who are sexually active. This resource provides appropriate information at each decision point to support staff in making the best decision for the young person within the law and current guidelines.

The framework is based on an ethical decision-making process which provides professionals with a template to guide them through the more difficult aspects of decision-making in regards to young people’s sexual health.

For further information or to register, please contact either Isabel Steele, HIV/AIDS & Sexual Health Officer, tel. 01870 603 156 or Steven Ferguson, Child Protection, tel. 01851 822 737.

Communicating with young people about sexual health

Explores the issues involved in communication between parents and carers and young people about sexual health and relationships, equipping participants to develop their skills in working in a supportive and empowering way with those parents and carers.   Aimed at NHS, Community and Voluntary staff.

For further information or to reserve a place contact Isabel Steele, HIV/AIDS & Sexual Health Officer, tel. 01870 603 156 or email:

Developing Work Practice in the Area of Sexual Health and Relationships (for those who work with people with Learning Difficulties)

Explores issues around sexual health, choice and the law for those supporting people with learning difficulties.  Also looks at dilemmas, values and attitudes. Aimed at NHS, community and voluntary staff.

For further information or to reserve a place contact Isabel Steele, HIV/AIDS & Sexual Health Officer, tel. 01870 603 156 or email:

Drug and Alcohol Awareness

Tailored training and education on alcohol and drugs can be provided to parents, youth groups and community groups on a variety of health issues relating to substance misuse.

For further information, please contact Ruth Grant, ADP Administrative Assistant, tel. 01851 762022 or email: 


Health & Homelessness Training

Training is now available for all front line NHS staff who wish to develop their awareness on the issues around homelessness in the Western Isles. Training will be provided by Tina Burgess, Senior Health Promotion Officer, and Lorraine Graham, CNES Homelessness Manager.

For further information or to register, please contact Mary MacLean, Senior Health Promotion Officer, tel. 01851 762014 or email:

Health Inequalities (Short Course)

Taster to health inequalities.  Aimed at NHS, statutory, community and voluntary staff.       Especially suitable for those working with health and homelessness groups and individuals.

For further information or to register, please contact Mary MacLean, Senior Health Promotion Officer, tel. 01851 762014 or email:

Health Information: Services, Access and Insight 

This is an interactive session (internet access/availability is essential) aimed at raising awareness of the Health Promotion Department’s Health Information & Resources Service, HPD website, NHSWI Patient/Carer Information website, and the NHSinform  website.

The session is aimed primarily at students undertaking courses at the University of Stirling – Western Isles Campus, and Lews Castle College, but can also be delivered to NHS staff, community and voluntary sector, and workplaces.

The session is delivered by the Health Information & Resources Officer and takes approximately 1 hour.  At the end of the session, participants will gain:

  • an understanding of the Health Information & Resources Service – its resources, health topics and materials available.
  • an insight to the Health Promotion Department – the various work HPD staff are involved in, partnership workings, and forthcoming events and training.
  • an insight to the NHSWI patient/carer inhouse publications website.
  • an understanding of the NHS inform website – a link to the one-stop health information source for medical conditions, surgical procedures, travel health, events and campaigns, etc.

For further information or to request the session to be delivered, please contact Marissa MacLennan, Health Information & Resources Officer, or tel. (01851) 701545.

Health Issues (Short Course)

Taster to the highly popular ‘Health Issues in the Community’ course being held in October.  Aimed at NHS, statutory, community and voluntary sector, and students.

For further information or to register, please contact Mary MacLean, Senior Health Promotion Officer, tel. 01851 762014 or email:

‘Improving the Sexual Health of Drug Users’ Training

This two day course is aimed at anyone who works with drug users in order to increase their confidence to improve the sexual and reproductive health of drug users.  This training will support the Scottish Government’s Sexual Health and Blood Borne Virus Framework and will focus on the outcomes:

  • Outcome 1:    Fewer newly acquired blood borne virus and sexually transmitted infections; fewer unintended pregnancies.
  • Outcome 2:    A reduction in the health inequalities gap in sexual health and blood borne viruses.
  • Outcome 3:    People affected by blood borne viruses lead longer, healthier lives.
  • Outcome 4:    Sexual relationships are free from coercion and harm.
  • Outcome 5:    A society where the attitudes of individuals, the public, professionals and the media in Scotland towards sexual health and blood borne viruses are positive, non-stigmatising and supportive.

By attending the training, participants will have:

  • Explored why people use drugs and the effects of drug use on choices around sexual health
  • Shared knowledge about the law, contraception and sexually transmitted infections
  • Analysed why people take risks around sexual health and drug use
  • Explored attitudes to sexual health and drug use
  • Practised discussing sexual and reproductive health with drug users
  • Identified local services and resources

For further information or to reserve a place contact Isabel Steele, HIV/AIDS & Sexual Health Officer, tel. 01870 603 156 or email:

Mentally Healthy Workplace Training for Managers: Blended Learning

Line managers have a crucial role in supporting the health and wellbeing of employees. From communication, to clarity of job role, line managers can influence the success of a team. This training includes good practice in promoting positive mental health and wellbeing as well as offering practical examples of how to support employees experiencing mental health problems.  The aims of the course are:

  • To give employers and line managers a broad understanding of mental health
  • To identify key factors that contributes to a mentally healthy workplace
  • To improve managers confidence in dealing with this issue
  • To ensure that managers are aware of their legislative responsibilities in relation to health and wellbeing.

This one day course is delivered via blended learning and before attending this date you musthave completed the Mentally Healthy Workplaces online course – the link for the course can be found on the Healthy Working Lives website.   For further information or to register, please contact Norma Macleod, Healthy Working Lives Coordinator, or tel.  01851 762017.

Paths for All: Volunteer Walk Leader Training (1 day)

Do you enjoy walking?  Would you be interested in leading local walks within your community?

By being a Walk Leader you are able to combine your love of walking with the important role of helping to improve the health and wellbeing of the people of Scotland.

For further information on this free training please contact Karen Peteranna, Health Improvement Practitioner, tel. 01851 762016 or email:

Play@Home Training

Play@Home is a national project being rolled out across the country by NHS Scotland and is a practical tool for assisting the early years workforce to develop a common understanding of evidence that underpins health improvement, education, the promotion of play and physical activity.  The training is suitable for a diverse range of practitioners who work in health, local authority, or the voluntary sector and who have experience of working in:

  • child care
  • early education
  • physical activity
  • health promotion

The training helps workers link theory to practice and relate the current policy context, outline motivational interviewing and develop partnership approaches at local level and considers the health inequalities that many families face.

The training is 3 hours and can be tailored to meet the needs of your team or organisation.  If you are interested in attending a Play@Home training course please contact Anna MacDonald, Health Visitor Team Lead, tel. 01851 709842 or email:

Poverty Awareness Training

This course is aimed at those who wish to have a better understanding of poverty issues, and would like to identify ways in which they could engage more effectively with individuals and communities facing poverty and social exclusion.  On completion of this course, participants will:

  • have an understandign of the nature, roots and causes of poverty and what poverty means to those experiencing it.
  • have an understanding of the relationship between inequality and poverty.
  • be aware of ways in which common prejudices and sterotypes can lead to dicrimination and the unfair treatment of people experiencing poverty.
  • have gained an overview of national and local anti-poverty strategies and policy responses to tackling poverty.
  • have identified changes and improvements which can be made to work practices to improve service delivery.

For further information or to register, please contact Mary MacLean, Senior Health Promotion Officer, tel. 01851 762014 or email:

Raising the Issue of Smoking Training

This is a course developed by PATH (Partnership Action on Tobacco & Health) and delivered by local trainers from NHS Western Isles. This easily accessible course comprises two parts; an e-learning component (1-2 hours) and face to face learning (3 hours).

This is a generic raising the issue (of smoking) course and is suitable to all NHS staff, particularly those engaging with patients, public and clients or from other sectors and wider partner agencies.  The training will:

  • introduce you to the key elements of  brief interventions
  • improve your awareness of brief intervention and give you the confidence to raise the issue of smoking
  • offer you solutions to barriers of raising the issue.
  • highlight the health effects of smoking and the benefits of stopping.
  • give you an overview of local services (including any specialism, for example pregnancy, mental health, youth) and referral pathways.

Additional courses

There are two other courses available dealing with raising the issue during pregnancy and raising the issue in mental health services. Both of these courses can be delivered locally.

For further information or to find out when the next courses are available please contact Joanne O’Donnell, Smoking Cessation Coordinator, Smokefree Hebrides, tel. 01851 701623 or email:

Scottish Training on Drugs and Alcohol (STRADA)

Tailored alcohol and drug training and education provided by Scottish Training on Drugs and Alcohol (STRADA).  Courses are offered throughout the year. Examples of courses offered include:

  • Alcohol: Issues and Interventions
  • Brief Interventions (For GP Practice staff only)
  • An Introduction to Motivational Interviewing
  • Children and Families Affected by Problem Drug & Alcohol Misuse
  • Working with Mental Health & Dual Diagnosis in Relation to Drug and Alcohol Misuse
  • Substance Misuse in Pregnancy
  • Substance Misuse and Offending

For further information, please contact: Ruth Grant, ADP Administrative Assistant, tel. 01851 762022 or email: 

Sex and Relationships Education with People who have Learning Disabilities: Practical Approaches  

This 3 day training event is aimed at those working with people with learning disabilities, who often have some anxieties when they start to think about doing sex and relationship work as there are many complex issues which need to be considered.  Workers with an interest in this area will find that this 3 day training will support them to increase their knowledge in order for them to be more competent in delivering sexual health work.  Please note that participants must be willing to attend all 3 days.

Aim of the course:

  • To increase participants awareness of sexual health and wellbeing issues for young people and adults with learning disabilities.
  • To support participants to develop their current knowledge, skills and confidence to plan, deliver and evaluate Sex and Relationships Work to groups and individuals with learning disabilities.

By the end of the course, participants will be able to:

  • Increase knowledge on rights legislation and policy issues.
  • Gain skills and awareness in addressing issues of sexuality
  • Examine their skills base and any opportunities for development.
  • Explore how to structure a programme of ‘Sex and Relationships Work’ for a group or an individual with learning disabilities.
  • Design a session for delivery in the workplace.
  • Examine a range of resources and practise exercises.
  • Have an awareness of inclusive practice.
For further information or to reserve a place contact Isabel Steele, HIV/AIDS & Sexual Health Officer, tel. 01870 603 156 or email:


Leave a Reply