signpost - empowering families, changing lives

About Signpost

Signpost is a registered charity operating within West Lothian. As well as offering information and support to families of young people with additional support needs, we also provide a relaxing, non-judgemental environment in which people can discuss any worries or issues and begin to decide what will be the best solution for their needs.

We have a drop-in office at Beatlie Campus, Livingston, where you can chat to staff (usually without an appointment). We can also be contacted by phone, email, or letter, using our Freepost address.

Sometimes, when a child is newly diagnosed, the family may have no idea what questions to ask, never mind what answers to seek, and our staff can provide guidance, drawn from their own experience, about what may be appropriate.

Most of our staff are parents of young people with additional needs, so they understand the pleasures and frustrations which others may be going through.

A little history…

Signpost began as a volunteer project in March 2001, run by a group of parents who started a help-line in Lesley Mount’s spare bedroom.

Telephone callers were offered information about local services and a chance to chat to parents who had been through similar experiences. The volunteers used the knowledge they had gained from looking after their own children, and the information they had collected about local services.

With the support of staff from West Lothian Council, and NHS Lothian, and following an intensive publicity campaign to raise awareness of the service, the volunteers soon found parents and professionals calling the help-line from all over West Lothian.

The helpline was originally funded by The Millennium Commission, a Government fund to help volunteers make a difference in their community. After a successful year, the parents formed a committee and Signpost became a charity. This allowed Signpost to apply for funding from the Big Lottery (Community Fund, as it was known then), from a trust fund (Lloyds TSB Foundation for Scotland) and from Children in Need (a charity which funds services for children). These three gave funding to continue the service with paid staff, and the Big Lottery and Lloyds TSB have continued to support Signpost with grants up to the end of 2008.

Signpost has grown from the 2 original job-share staff to four part-time staff (who mostly have children with additional support needs) and operates full-time from an office at Beatlie Campus in Craigshill, Livingston, where it is close to other services used by families who have children with additional support needs.

The work of the staff is overseen by a committee of volunteer parents and professionals, who ensure that Signpost remains true to its ideals and close to its users’ needs. If you would like to know more about the committee, click here.

Quality of information:

Signpost has tried to ensure that the contents of our website are accurate. However, Signpost does not represent or warrant that the information accessible via our website is accurate, complete or up to date. Our website is made available for public use solely on the basis that Signpost excludes to the extent lawfully permitted all liability whatsoever for any loss or damage arising out of use of our website or reliance upon its contents.

More details of our charitable status can be found by contacting the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator. Our registration number is SC032398. You can see our registration here

More guidance on judging the quality of information on websites can be found at the Quality Information Checklist (QUICK).

Information specifically about the effectiveness of treatments for autism can be found on the Autism Research website.


Signpost does not collect personal information about the visitors to our website.  However, this website uses Google Analytics, a web analytics service provided by Google, Inc.  (“Google”).  Google Analytics uses “cookies”, which are text files placed on your computer to help the website analyze how users use the site.  The information generated by the cookie about your use of the website (including your IP address) will be transmitted and stored by Google on servers in the United States.  Google will use this information for the purpose of evaluating your use of the website, compiling reports on website activity for website operators and providing other services relating to website activity and internet usage.  Google may also transfer this information to third parties where required to do so by law, or where such third parties process the information on Google’s behalf.  Google will not associate your IP address with any other data held by Google.  You may refuse the use of cookies by selecting the appropriate settings on your browser, however please note that if you do this you may not be able to use the full functionality of this website.  By using this website, you consent to the processing of data about you by Google in the manner for the purposes set out above.

We use Google’s analytics tool to analyse site usage, how our users arrive at our site, what they do on the sit, what browser they are using and on what operating system etc.  However, this analytics data is not tied to personally identifiable information.

For more information on Google Analytics and Google’s own privacy policy, see this link:

From time to time our site may request information from users via surveys, contests or for a particular service (e.g. newsletter).  Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose this information.  Information requested may include contact information and other information.  We will use the contact information to notify winners.  We will not publish winner’s contact details on the site though on request we will provide details of any winner’s names.

We do not sell or rent any personally identifiable information about you to any third party.

This document only addresses the use and disclosure of information we collect from you.  To the extent that you disclose your information to other parties, whether they are other members of the website or other sites throughout the internet, different rules may apply to their use or disclosure of the personal information you disclose to them.


Signpost has a complaints procedure for anyone who is dissatisfied with our service. If you are unhappy with any aspect of our service, please get in touch and staff will be pleased to explain our complaints procedure.