Glasgow Community Mental Health and Wellbeing Fund

‘Give a Dog a Bone’ are tackling loneliness

‘Give a Dog a Bone… and an animal a home’ is a unique charity tackling loneliness for older adults, through animal companionship and friendship. The idea for the charity first came about in 2012 aiming to tackle loneliness and isolation by helping older adults re-engage with their community. In 2018 their Shawlands Community Space was born, providing a place where anyone could enjoy a cup of tea and a chat, as well as free activities and treatments for over 60s.

In March 2022, the charity was awarded £9,600 from the Glasgow Community Mental Health and Wellbeing Fund to support their Companionship in the Community project in Shawlands. This project offers a variety of free services to encourage people to get out of the house and be part of a community, helping them meet people, cuddle dogs, and make new friends.

This grant allows the project to provide a safe space where older adults can make new friends, learn new skills and mix with dogs.

Give a Dog a Bone Yoga Session Companionship in the Community 


Louise Russell, Founder of Give a Dog a Bone told us more about the programme:

We provide a tea and chat service 6 days per week, along with social activities such as community group dog walks, Spanish for beginners and Chair Yoga – all in the company of dogs.


Give a Dog a Bone is a staple in many older adult’s weekly routine, providing life enhancing opportunities. We quite simply could not do this without support from grants like the Wellbeing Fund.”

One regular visitor to the service also shared her experience:

“Coming to Give a Dog a Bone gives me a sense of purpose.  I enjoy meeting the dogs and their owners plus the people who don’t have dogs but come in to socialise.  It’s a friendly, caring environment.”


Loneliness and social isolation, especially in older adults are a very serious issue and can increase the risk of depression, anxiety, stress, and dementia. It’s fantastic to see projects like Give a Dog a Bone flourish.

Read more about this charity and how you can get involved on their website Give a Dog a Bone


More about the Fund

The first phase of the Community Mental Health and Wellbeing Fund saw a total of £2.7m granted to community wellbeing projects across Glasgow. Read more on our blog. The Scottish Government has also announced £15 million for second year of funding. Read more in their press release.

The Communities Health and Wellbeing fund in Glasgow was coordinated by Glasgow CVS with help from partners including: Volunteer Glasgow, Glasgow Social Enterprise Network, Glasgow City HSCP, Glasgow City Council, North West Voluntary Sector Network, Voluntary Sector North East Glasgow, Voluntary Sector Voice, West of Scotland Regional Equality Council, Glasgow Disability Alliance, Scottish Refugee Council, Glasgow Life, Mental Health Network Greater Glasgow, Glasgow Kelvin College, Glasgow Equality Forum, LGBT Health Scotland.

Read other case studies on the Community Mental Health and Wellbeing Fund GCVS