Local News for Tuesday 18th September 2018

TOURISM PARTNERSHIP FOR OUTER HEBRIDES
VisitScotland, in partnership with Outer Hebrides Tourism, has recently announced a new approach in the delivery of visitor information in the Outer Hebrides.
A formal agreement has been reached which will ensure that visitors to the Outer Hebrides have a varied, convenient and co-ordinated range of channels to obtain information – encouraging them to stay longer, spend more and spread the benefits of tourism across the Outer Hebrides all year round.
Plans are now being put in place to enhance the current iCentre in Stornoway; create a new year-round information partnership in Tarbert with a retail business; develop new and enhanced information partnerships in the Uists, supported by a dedicated member of staff based seasonally in one partnership outlet; and develop a stronger presence on Barra with the local tourism industry for the 2019 season.
In line with its plan to improve connectivity for visitors, Outer Hebrides Tourism also hopes to roll out Wi-Fi across various partnership locations throughout the islands.
In addition, the new approach seeks to provide an appropriate presence for the Outer Hebrides in mainland VisitScotland iCentres such as Ullapool, Oban, Portree and Inverness.

RAINY DAY FUND BONUS FOR LOW PAID
A new savings scheme to help people on low incomes kick-start a “rainy day” fund and build up their financial resilience has been launched.
The Government initiative, which is available to working people on tax credits and universal credit, rewards savers with an extra 50p for every £1 saved. Hundreds of thousands of working people are expected to benefit from Help to Save over the lifetime of the UK-wide scheme, although specific targets for take-up have not been set. Around 3.5 million people currently meet the eligibility criteria.
People saving the maximum of £2,400 into the scheme over four years would receive a bonus of £1,200.
The money could give people a handy pot for household emergencies such as a broken boiler or savings goals such as a family holiday, for example. For some, it could be an alternative to taking on costly debts.
Help to Save accounts cannot be accessed by going into physical bank branches. Money put into the accounts is held with Treasury-backed body NS&I. They are online accounts, with telephone banking for people who cannot access the internet. Account holders can put away between £1 and £50 every calendar month and accounts last for four years from the date they are opened.
To apply, savers can visit www.gov.uk/helptosave or use the HMRC app

ISLAND ORGANISATIONS URGED-GET READY FOR RECYCLE WEEK
Zero Waste Scotland is calling on local authorities, businesses and organisations in the Highlands and Islands to pledge to take action on household plastics this upcoming Recycle Week.
Recycle Week, which takes place between 24 - 30 September, is the annual UK-wide campaign to raise awareness of the importance of recycling. This year, Zero Waste Scotland is calling ‘time’s up’ on the 30,000 tonnes of plastic bottles ending up in landfill each year, when they could have been recycled.
Zero Waste Scotland is asking organisations in the Highlands and Islands to support the campaign by using the online partner guide with its ready for use, downloadable campaign material. Getting involved with the campaign is an easy way to highlight how recycling the different kinds of plastic bottles around the home, as well as the workplace right now can make a difference for future generations.
To download the toolkit for Recycle Week please visit:
https://www.zerowastescotland.org.uk/RecycleWeek2018Toolkit