Helping those who would otherwise not be able to afford to visit us.
Erraid offers an opportunity to immerse in raw nature, to connect to spirit, to experience an established intentional community, to participate in the joy of work that serves others … and members of the community have been welcoming guests here for over 40 years.
Recent months have been unprecedented and Covid lockdown has meant we were closed to guests between late-March and mid-August. It has been great to have the vibrancy and fresh energy guests bring as well as the end of week feedback, which so often touches our hearts. Scottish Government restrictions mean, we are now only able to offer Retreat weeks and that we are also encouraging guests to come for a longer stay, so that they can be fully integrated in the community once they have had two weeks here on retreat.
We want to remain welcoming to as many as possible, regardless of their background, and to support this we have established the Erraid Bursary Fund. The fund will be used to support the living costs of guests who would otherwise not be able to afford to stay, including those who need help to be able to afford to stay here longer.
Please help us to establish the fund by making a contribution today and consider whether you would be willing to make a regular gift. We promise to provide donors with feedback on the specific individuals supported with the fund so that you know a little of their story and the impact of a visit to our beautiful island community.
We were able to award our first bursary in the autumn of 2020, thanks to the generosity of our donors, to Michael who admitted having struggled due to Covid-19. Our bursary enabled him to stay two weeks instead just coming for one week and at the end of his stay he told us “… it was only in week two that I found my rhythm and routine and really started to recover some inner calm. After two weeks, I feel so much better than when I arrived. … The beauty of the island is so uplifting…. I’m really incredibly grateful. Thank you.”
You can find a story of another bursary recipient, Annie, here too.
Erraid is part of the Findhorn Foundation, a registered charity (Scottish registered charity number ), however it has always been self-supporting, generating the majority of income to support the day to day costs of our island life from guests. Like everyone else we have utility bills, transport costs, food purchases ….. Whilst the island is owned by a Dutch family, the community also covers day to day maintenance costs of the land, houses and vehicles including the tractor and boats. We need to know that we always have a pot of funds to cover the unexpected.
Fortunately, we have had healthy reserves to fall back on during these difficult times. However, we are already being mindful of the decline in our reserves; minimising expenditure and agreeing how to implement a reduction in members stipend if required. With our new arrangements meaning we can host less guests for the forseeable future, we need to keep a close eye on our account books and are conscious of the need to ensure each bed we offer contributes to our on-going financial security. The bursary fund means that we can support those to come who would otherwise not be able to.