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Link Up

We believe in the strength of people and communities.

Through Link Up, people living in some of Scotland’s most deprived communities are working together to end generations of disadvantage and stop the cycle of poverty.

We do not accept the status quo.

We want to improve the lives of people living in Scotland’s most deprived communities and end, once and for all, the disparity of opportunity that continues to exist in too many of our cities and towns. Link Up is bringing people together to make this happen in their own communities.

Link Up was established in 2012 without a set model or framework, just the premise that the ingredients for lasting change already lie in our communities in the shape of the passion, strengths, skills, knowledge and interests of local people, and when people are connected and energised, radical change can and does happen.

Our Link Up workers are embedded in the community and work directly with local people to harness these existing resources. The community establishes activities that local people want to take part in and help run.

But these are not just activities; they help people to build relationships with their fellow residents, creating new social connections where they look out for each other.

They create positive and caring environments, giving people the confidence and skills to effect positive change for themselves, their family and the community they live in.

Because Link Up is for the community, by the community and takes the time to work with anyone in the community, it can engage the most marginalised and vulnerable people who have for so long been left behind.

By connecting people, championing ability, inspiring and encouraging ideas, and by listening to people in the community, Link Up breeds confidence and self-belief. It gives people choices and helps them create their own opportunities. It allows them to rediscover a sense of purpose and find their own way to a happier life.

And that is how we put an end to poverty and disadvantage in Scotland’s communities.


people building connections in communities


regular community volunteers


communities across Scotland


of community-led activities


Link Up Independent Evaluation

An independent evaluation of the first phases of Link Up found clear evidence the programme has had significant positive impacts on local people and their communities.

Read the independent evaluation

What makes a Link Up worker effective?

Tackling societies biggest issues depends on very special types of people.

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Link Up’s relevance to a Healthier Scotland

Find out how Link Up contributes to Scottish Government’s commitment to reduce health inequalities and improve health

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Link Up’s Relevance in a Justice Context

Find out how Link Up contributes to to the delivery of Scottish Government’s Justice Strategy

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Case study

"Link Up has been life changing"

“People matter and people care. They just need somebody to care about what they care about!” Read Tessa’s story about Link Up is changing lives in Kirkcaldy’s Gallatown area.

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Link Up

Portfolio of projects

Craigmillar, Edinburgh (Thistle Foundation)
Link Up

Craigmillar, Edinburgh (Thistle Foundation)

The Thistle Foundation is the host organisation in Craigmillar.  Link Up started in Craigmillar in 2016.

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Gallatown, Kirkcaldy (Kirkcaldy YMCA)
Link Up

Gallatown, Kirkcaldy (Kirkcaldy YMCA)

  Kirkcaldy YMCA is the host organisation for the Link Up worker. Gary Hughes started as the Link Up Worker early in March 2012.     Gallatown is a suburb in north east Kirkcaldy near Dysart in coastal Fife. Originally called Gallowstown, (from the frequent execution of criminals in feudal times, or from the special

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Gorbals (Crossroads Youth and Community Association)
Link Up

Gorbals (Crossroads Youth and Community Association)

Community: Gorbals (Laurieston).    Crossroads Youth and Community Association is the host organisation partnering with Inspiring Scotland on Link Up.  The Gorbals is an area on the south bank of the river Clyde in Glasgow made up of the districts of Laurieston, Tradeston, Kingston, and Hutchesontown.  

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Contact Us

We work together and get results.

We work with experts from the voluntary, public, private and academic sectors. Get in touch if you want to help us build a better Scotland.

Speak to us.
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