A CHARITY champion who spent more than a decade managing the Carers of East Lothian has stepped down from his role to pursue other interests.
Tony Segall was responsible for developing a range of services for family carers in East Lothian over the 14 years he was in charge.
The charity supports all adults operating as carers, providing information and services to help their individual responsibilities, enhance their own wellbeing, and strengthen their collective voice to improve services.
When Tony joined the charity there was little in the way of public support and recognition for those who help their elderly, ill or disabled relatives.
But his leadership helped the charity to develop advice and support for more than 1000 carers about such issues as claiming welfare benefits and opportunities to meet others in the same situation.
Margaret McKay, chairman of the charity, said Tony’s work was crucial in developing the support services their clients felt they needed.
“Tony has been a true champion for carers in East Lothian,” she said.
“All of the services developed by Carers of East Lothian under Tony’s leadership have been a direct response to the needs and concerns brought to the charity by carers.
“Tony gave a collective voice to carers who were previously unheard.
“Carers were often isolated and did not know how and where to get help.”
Her Royal Highness, Princess Anne, the Princess Royal, officially opened the Carers of East Lothian’s new premises on Musselburgh High Street in 2011 in one of the highlights of the charity’s history.
Speaking at the time, Tony said the new centre gave the charity more space and allowed it to help more carers and host more support groups and provide more training courses.
He said he was pleased to offer a local base for Alzheimer Scotland and Lothian Centre for Inclusive Living, and other partner organisations.
The charity works in partnership with East Lothian Council, NHS Lothian and various charitable trusts to deliver services for carers – many of whom live in remote areas and have limited access to mainstream services.
It also relies on awards from trusts and independent donations.
The charity – which organises social events and recreational opportunities such as short breaks and offers training and outreach work to support carers – is hoping to appoint a new director later this month.
Carers, colleagues and members of other organisations plan on marking his achievements with a celebratory event for Tony, who still lives in Musselburgh.