People who find themselves in this caring for someone with dementia are faced with difficult decisions and challenges on a daily basis – watching the person they know and love slowly change, deteriorate and finally losing them to the condition. Carers often report an overwhelming sense of loss, stress, isolation, depression, anxiety as well as financial concerns, all of which can result in the carer’s own mental health and wellbeing deteriorating.

VOCAL’s counselling service was established in 2000 with the aim of providing emotional support to carers from all backgrounds and caring situations. In recent years the service has experienced a significant increase in the number of carers accessing the service who are caring for someone with dementia.

Lorraine Mackenzie, Counselling Service Manager at VOCAL explains:

“Around one third of all the people we support in the counselling service care for a loved one diagnosed with dementia. As this number is reportedly only going to keep rising* we had to respond to that increase in demand by launching a new counselling provision within the existing counselling service.

Thanks to funding from Queensberry House Trust, Awards For All and Souter Charitable Trust I am delighted to announce that counselling specifically for dementia carers is now available at the VOCAL carers centres in Edinburgh and Midlothian.”

How to access the dementia carers’ counselling service

Carers living in Edinburgh and Lothian can find out more about the dementia carers’ counselling service by visiting the VOCAL website or contacting the carers’ counselling service directly:

Email: or phone: 0131 466 8082.

Further support for people caring for someone affected by dementia

VOCAL also offer group workshops and information sessions specifically for carers of someone with dementia. In addition, carers can access free monthly surgeries with independent advisors to support them in writing and registering Wills and Power of Attorney documents, planning for long term care and benefit checks to ensure they are receiving everything they and the person they support are eligible for.

For further information please contact the VOCAL Carer Support Team


* 62% over the next 20 years, City of Edinburgh Council