Training and Development

We're committed to our learning and yours.

One of the great benefits of working at Thistle is access to our fantastic training programmes. Here are a few courses that you'll participate in as part of your work with us.

Life is for Living

This is a four day course that introduces newer workers to key elements of the Thistle approach.

It is highly experiential which means everyone can bring their personal experiences of work and life to the course to learn from each other and gain fresh insights to how they do their job.  Using person centred approaches we enable people to explore questions such as...

All these and more are tackled during the course which is delivered by a combination of trainers, front line staff and people we work alongside.

You should expect to have the chance to take part in Life is for Living during the first six months of your employment with Thistle. 

Person Centred Principles Into Practice

This is a 12-day course designed to deepen the person centred knowledge and practice of people who have worked for Thistle for between 1-2 years.

All supported living staff are expected to undertake this course and successful completion leads to a pay rise for PAs.  The course also provides a firm learning foundation for those staff who are required to subsequently undertake their SVQ accreditation for the purposes of SSSC Registration.

Once again this is a highly experiential course in which the vast majority of the learning derives from the group discussions and interactions. However, a number of key ideas are explored in depth – for example: the Person Centred Approach, Personality profiles and styles, Transactional Analysis, Group dynamics, working with personal outcomes, focussing on gifts and assets, Person centred Planning and much, much more.

The course is organised into three 4-day parts:

After each part of the course participants are asked to complete a reflective assignment which is based around applying ideas from the course to your practice. The course usually takes about six months to complete. The current course leaders are Steve Coulson and Terry Daly.

SVQ Accreditation

From 2017, all PAs at Thistle will be required to apply for Registration to the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC). The required minimum level of qualification for staff working in Housing Support and Care at Home services (the categories of the Register which apply to Thistle’s work) is SVQ in Health and Social Care Level 2. However, Thistle believes that the SVQ Level 3 qualification more accurately reflects the work that we do so we will fund staff to do this one if required to be registered.

The SVQ in Health and Care Level 3 is delivered in partnership with Assessors from ARC Scotland, who are matched individually to each candidate. You decide with your Assessor how you plan to work through the SVQ:

On completion of the SVQ Level 3 you will be not only be able to register with the SSSC but will also have a good qualification which will support your future career development.

 Watch this video for more information on SSSC registration


Get in touch

To find out more or to arrange a meeting, please contact Jean Muir or Nichola Ma on 0131 661 3366 or at and 

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