Scottish Learning Disability Awards 2020

We were delighted to see one of our families recognised at the Scottish Learning Disability Awards 2020, winning the Family Carer and their Relative category. On their YouTube channel, Shahzad shares informative videos that are appreciated by people around the world, highlighting ways to support people with complex additional needs through caring for his brother.


Raring2Go! e-zine

Our local family magazine Raring2go! has gone on line during the pandemic! This winter issue brings you lots of fun things to do locally and at home in your bubble this Christmas.

You can view it online HERE.

Child Winter Heating Assistance

What is Child Winter Heating Assistance?
Child Winter Heating Assistance is an annual payment to children and young people with disabilities to support with the increased costs of heating their homes in Winter.
Families who meet the criteria and are eligible will receive a payment of £200. The payment is made per individual rather than per household which means there are no limits to the number of children per family who can receive this payment. If a child or young person receives the qualifying benefits for one day in the qualifying week, they will get this payment.
Whilst Child Winter Heating Assistance is intended for paying those increased winter fuel costs, clients do not need to provide evidence that the money was spent on fuel bills.

In order to be eligible for Child Winter Heating Assistance the following criteria must be met ;
– a child or young person must receive the highest rate care component of DLA child in the qualifying week. The qualifying week for Child Winter Heating Assistance is the 3rd week in September each year. This year, the qualifying week was Monday 21 September to Sunday 27 September 2020.
– be resident in Scotland*
As long as someone is getting the highest rate care component of DLA Child on any day of the qualifying week, they will get the payment.
If a client is awarded a backdated payment of the higher rate care component of DLA Child at a later date for the qualifying week, they will need to contact Social Security Scotland to let us know. We can then process the Child Winter Heating Assistance payment.

How to apply
There is no need to apply for Child Winter Heating Assistance. We will use information provided by the Department for Work and Pensions. People will automatically get this payment annually, as long as they remain eligible.
Clients will get a letter in advance of the payment. This will let them know that they will be receiving a payment and telling them why. As highlighted earlier, the payment is made per individual rather than per household, meaning each eligible child in the household will receive a payment.
Payments will be made from the week commencing 23 November. The payment will be made to the same account as the clients DLA child payment. We will be making payments in batches and everyone should get their Child Winter Heating Assistance by Friday 11 December.

For further information about Child Winter Heating Assistance you can visit or contact the local Relationship Lead noted below.

Aberdeen City Local Relationship Lead – Lisa Buchan email: Tel: 07341 790184

Join In The Festive Fun!!!

This festive season, our expressive arts elves – sorry, team 🧑‍🎄 – have been busy supporting classes in creating videos for a Christmas Countdown Calendar. However, for the final video they need your help!

They are looking for as many people as possible to be involved in the ‘Rockin Around The Christmas Tree’ video including all staff, parents and partner agencies.

To get you started, Keith and Emmeline have filmed an example including makaton signing.

To get involved we would like you to film excerpts of yourself signing or dancing along with the song which will then be edited together to create the final window on the Orchard Brae advent calendar.

Here is some filming information on the best way to film your excerpt.

Once you have your final video, please email it to Keith or Emmeline via their gw emails:

Parent Consultation: Restructure of ASN and Outreach Services

Aberdeen City Council is currently seeking your views on the new proposed restructured ASN and Outreach Service.

Our ASN services require to be more responsive to learners needs across the city, to achieve this, our services need a clear structure which advocates consistency and a shared vision. Recent recommendations Scottish ASN review have been considered in the restructuring. The business case attached outlines our proposal for the structure and management of ASN and Outreach Services. 

Please use the link to provide us with feedback. Feedback Form Please note the consultation period ends on 23rd December 2020.

The review of Scotland’s ASN can be found here.  

There’s Something Spooky Going On…

There’s definitely something spooky going on at Orchard Brae this week.

Classes have been busy carving and decorating pumpkins to display in our pumpkin patch.

There was even a pumpkin hunt around the school.

And today, some pupils (and staff) were dressed up in their Halloween outfits. We thought they all looked fang-tastic!!

The video below from Singing Hands has lots of spooky Halloween Makaton signs for you to have a go at!

If you are celebrating Halloween this weekend, have a wonderfully spooky and fun-filled time!

PAMIS: Coronavirus And People With Learning Disabilities Study

We all know how much COVID-19 has had an impact on everyone and PAMIS family carers and staff are also very aware of how COVID-19 has had an even greater impact on people with PMLD.

PAMIS would like to hear from parents and carers of those with PMLD aged 16 and above, as you and the person you care for are living the experience and it is critical that they know what that reality is. 

Participating in this survey will ensure that you and your son’s or daughter’s reality is seen and not hidden

The survey is conducted online, asking highly relevant questions related to your reality of living in ‘COVID-19’ Scotland.  Completing this survey will help document you and your son or daughters experience over the months since March 2020. The survey will enable you to tell those who make defining decisions, around how support and care for people with PMLD and their family carers is approached, in this changed and ever-changing COVID-19 landscape.  

To register your interest now please email Brenda Garrard

If an online survey is not something you are comfortable doing please get in touch with PAMIS and they can arrange a different way of responding. 

Aberdeen Endowment Trust Secondary School Bursary

The Aberdeen Endowments Trust Secondary School Bursary is available to low income families with a child attending secondary school from S1-S4 and is normally awarded as £100 per year. It can be applied for at any time from S1-S4 but cannot be granted retrospectively.

Aberdeen Endowment Trust Secondary School Bursary Application

The completed application should be sent to the Clerk, Aberdeen Endowments Trust, 19 Albert Street, Aberdeen, AB25 1QF or please email