Free Courses & Events

This page provides information on Free Courses that employees can partake in and all pages are linked on the right hand side of the page.


Monthly Health & Wellbeing Calendar

Please see the document on the left hand side to find out what is happening this month in H&W, and dates for your calendar! 

Free Mindfulness Courses and SQA Mental Health and Wellbeing Qualification Being Offered by CLD

Our colleagues in Community Learning and Development are offering face-to-face and online mindfulness courses.  They are also offering a qualification in Mental Health and Wellbeing.

  • Mindfulness Face-to-Face – This online course will go over some of the basic ways to use mindfulness in your everyday life.  It can help you relax, cope with stress and feel more balanced as well as having many other benefits.  If you can, why not go along and give it a try in a relaxed and friendly environment with plenty cups of to keep you going along the way!

This free course will run in Branchton Starting Tuesday 14th September from 1pm-2pm until the October break. 

  • Mindfulness Online – This online course will go over basic ways to use mindfulness included in the face-to-face sessions noted above.   You can do the course at a time and place that suits you, as well as join in an optional live online session every Wednesday afternoon with their tutor Jo.

This free course will run on the CLD Inverclyde website:

  • SQA Mental Health and Wellbeing – This course will allow participants to undertake three modules at SCQF level 4/5 and will include:
  • Understanding mental health issues
  • Coping strategies and building resilience
  • Influences on mental health and wellbeing

Contact the CLD team who will advise when this free course is running in your local area

For more information and how to register for any of the above courses please contact CLD on:

Call:  01475 715450 or Text: 07766440654


Free Suicide Awareness Training 

Suicide kills more than 6,000 people a year in the UK. It’s the single biggest killer of men under 49 and women under 34. Suicide takes more young lives than heart disease, more than cancer, more than road traffic accidents or stroke. The Zero Suicide Alliance is offering free online training courses in suicide prevention. The training is provided in 3 modules (Steps 1 to 3) and aims to enable people to identify when someone is experiencing suicidal feelings, to be able to speak out in a supportive manner, and to empower them to signpost the individual to the correct services or support.

Step 1 and Step 3 modules provide advice and guidance for individuals to support friends/family. Step 2 is based in a work setting and would be useful for both managers and colleagues. Each module requires interaction to getting you to think about what you would do/say in the scenarios covered in the modules, all contain audio and Step 3 also has video.

All 3 modules provide useful help, guidance and advice that everyone could use both in a professional and personal level.

Step 1 - ‘Step Up’ Social Isolation Training

A brief introduction to what social isolation is, how it affects mental health and how to help someone who may be isolated. It also covers adjusting to the ‘new normal’ following the pandemic and the changes to how people live and work.

Length – 5-10 minutes

Step 2 – ZSA Gateway Training

Introduction to Suicide Awareness – the module focuses on how to approach and help someone that may be considering taking their life

Length – 5-10 minutes

Step 3 – Suicide Awareness Training

This module is more in depth than Step 2 – it provides skills and confidence on how to approach and help someone considering suicide. It also works towards breaking down stigma surrounding suicide and encourages open conversation about it.

Length - 30 minutes

This training is quick and it could save a life. The best thing about it is that everyone can do it – you don’t need any clinical knowledge or background to understand and apply the principles. One life lost to suicide is too many – but if we all do our bit we can make a real difference.

We would encourage everyone to complete the training and gain the confidence to speak out and learn how to save a life. 

Mental Health & Wellbeing

We have put together a list of e-learning courses that you may find helpful to support your wellbeing during this time. The following courses are all accessible via the Councils e-learning platform, Brightwave, through your work PC or laptop using the link above, or your home PC/tablet/laptop/smartphone using the link on the right hand side. They include:

  • Dealing with Stress
  • Resilience Module
  • Healthy Living Module
  • Positive Thinking Module
  • Relaxation Module
  • Life Balance
  • Managing Emotions
  • Mindset Module
  • Mindfulness Module
  • Everyday Energy

Further resources and sources of support are listed on the Mental Health and Wellbeing Intranet page on ICON.

Free Online Mindfulness Course

In addition, there is a free online Mindfulness course available from the University of Aberdeen. The course is led by lecturer Colette Savage and aims to help learners build emotional resilience and wellbeing during this time. The course can be completed at your own pace, and accessed at any time from a laptop/smartphone/tablet. 

Upskilling - Free Online Courses

Skills Development Scotland have updated their World of Work website with learning opportunities. The courses are open to everyone, available in a range of different subjects and can help you to learn new skills at home during this time. The range of courses will be updated over the months ahead. See the World of Work website to find out more, link is available on the right hand side.

Free online digital and numeracy courses are also available via The Skills Toolkit from the National Careers Service. Resources have been developed with educational experts and employers and range from introductory to advanced. To find out more about the courses, tools and resources available, see the Skills Toolkit website linked to the right.

West College Scotland have free online level 2 certified and introductory courses available for a limited period of time on a variety of interesting subjects, including Business, Child and Social Care, Healthcare. To find out more and sign up for a course, see the West College Scotland website under external links.

Skills Development Scotland Individual Training Account (ITA)

ITAs are available through Skills Development Scotland to help people develop the skills they need for work, giving learners who meet the eligibility criteria up to £200 towards a single training course or training episode per year.

ITAs align to the training definitions set out by the Scottish Government and focus funds on those actively seeking employment and those who are currently in low paid work and looking to progress. Please note that application rounds are open for limited periods, see the below website links for up to date information.

To find out more about ITAs the link is on the right hand side.

To find out about eligibility criteria, search for courses and apply, see the World of Work website.

Virtual Mindfulness Sessions

As part our Health and Wellbeing programme we are delighted to offer a series of monthly mindfulness sessions running from August to December.  The sessions will be presented by Michelle Gillespie, Mind Matters Coach, and there will be a different focus each month.  The information for each session will be listed on ICON and sent via distribution lists at the start of each month.

What is Mindfulness?

Mindfulness enhances emotional intelligence and equips us with the ability to manage our emotions internally and externally. It can enable you to respond to difficult situations more effectively, can have a positive impact on your wellbeing and stress levels.  It is also linked to a number of other benefits including:

  • lower blood pressure
  • improved memory
  • improved emotional resilience,
  • better work-life balance.

How we control and channel our emotions has a powerful impact on our personal and professional lives. Negative emotions have the ability to cause stress and anxiety and divert energy away from productive activities or behaviours. By practising mindfulness at work and also at home, we will be better equipped to recognise negative emotions and handle them in healthier, less stressful ways.

Recording of Sessions

A recording of each session will be available and can be accessed by using the link on the right hand side.

You can practice mindfulness anywhere and you can access the session at any time.. While mindfulness doesn’t change what happens to you, it does change your relationship with what happens, so by taking some time to develop it as part of your daily routine you may find you enjoy life more and understand yourself better.

  • Session One (30 Minutes): This includes a mindfulness meditation session focussing on the benefits of being in the present moment. Closing off with a guided visualisation on letting go of something from your past that holds you back.
  • Session Two (30 Minutes): This includes a mindfulness session designed to allow you to connect with how you are feeling and move into the moment with ease, this is great for worriers, over-thinkers and analysers who get caught up trying to interpret the meaning behind other people’s actions.
  • Session Three (30 Minutes): This includes a mindfulness session on words and how different words have different engeries. The session encourages you to choose a word as an anchor to carry you into the new year.

British Sign Language (BSL) and Tactile BSL Course

This free online course from Public Health Scotland aims to increase your awareness of BSL and support you to reflect on and improve your practice. Helping you to share good practice in communicating with people who use BSL to improve experience of services.

Access the course using the links provide on the page.

West College Scotland

West College Scotland have free online level 2 certified and introductory courses available for a limited period of time on a variety of interesting subjects, including Business, Child and Social Care, Healthcare. To find out more and sign up for a course, see the West College Scotland website linked on the page. (See the Terms and Conditions at the bottom of the page for guidance as to the number of courses which can be undertaken at any one time). Up to date course availability can be accessed using the link.

Additionally, West College Scotland has four new SQA accredited Professional Development Award (PDA) courses at SCQF 7 starting soon which may be of interest. They are costless to all and delivered virtually in the evening, further details on the courses can be found using the link above. The courses include PDA History, Politics, Sociology and Psychology. 

Performance Appraisals

One of the most important areas where you will see our training programmes being used is in conjunction with your Performance Appraisal.

By reviewing your work priorities and personal learning objectives with your manager you will now be able to choose from a blended learning approach between 'on the job', face to face training courses with Course Booker or by e-Learning online. If you have any specific training needs but cannot find anything that suits please let us know and we can look into providing this if there is enough interest.


If you would like further information on the above topics please check ICON, Inverclyde Council's employee intranet, or if you do not have access please call the OD Team on 01475 712760.