What is the Cruas Project?​

The Cruas Project is an umbrella under which we run initiatives to tackle the cost-of-living crisis in Tiree. 

(A cost-of-living (CoL) crisis is when the prices of basic necessities such as energy and food increase much faster than the typical household income. For example, between June 2022 and June 2023, food prices rose by 17.3%.)

Our team values discretion and confidentiality. As a result, our work is not always obvious.

Previous (and ongoing) initiatives include;

  • A partnership with myTribe to tackle period poverty and provide menstrual products, for free, in our public bathroom and in others across Tiree.
  • Confidential support service – our Community Support Officers undertake home visits and phone calls to support clients in identifying and contacting external sources of support.
  • The Cruas Energy Grant (Winter 2022/23) was our pilot project that offered an initial £200 payment generated from our community wind turbine to residents with energy bills that were 10% or greater of their monthly income.
  • Attendance at local, regional, and national meetings to make sure the voices and experiences of those in Tiree are listened to by change-makers. 
  • Our two Community Support Officers are undertaking training to become Citizens Advice Bureau volunteers – this will give residents the choice of face-to-face meetings instead of being limited to online or phone call support.

Where is the Cruas Project based?

Our team is primarily located in the Tiree Trust office in Crossapol, but we also conduct home visits, participate in community events, and are available via phone or email.

You can email the team at cruas@tireetrust.org.uk or ring us at 01879 256017. Our team works varied hours, so you may not hear back from us right away. If you are still waiting to receive an acknowledgement email or phone call back after five working days, please get back in touch. 

You are welcome to drop by the Trust office if you would rather speak to us in person. Unfortunately, we can’t guarantee that one of the team will always be there for ad-hoc chats. However, if you would like to speak to us in person, we can arrange to chat where you are most comfortable and at a time that suits you best. 

Sometimes, explaining your situation over the phone or via email can be challenging. If you can give us a general overview (e.g. “What benefits am I entitled to?”) to let us gather relevant information, we can organise an in-person chat where you can go into more detail if needed. 

Who runs the Cruas Project?

The Cruas Project is run by Fiona Armstrong and Emmie Martin – the Community Support Officers (CSOs). 

We understand that sometimes you may prefer to speak with someone you’re familiar with, while other times you may prefer to speak with someone new. Between Fiona and Emmie, we can accommodate both preferences for most people. If you have a preference as to who you speak to, please let us know. We won’t be offended at all, as our priority is to ensure you feel comfortable speaking with whomever you choose.

The Cruas Project takes a human rights based approach to future initiatives.

Approaching the cost-of-living crisis from a human rights perspective means recognising that individuals should not be blamed for finding themselves in such a crisis. The cost-of-living crisis does not discriminate.

It is a human right to live in dignity – we all deserve to have our basic needs met. The current cost-of-living crisis represents a failure to meet these needs.

The Cruas Project can challenge this failure by using the Human Rights Act to inform our approach and ensure our rights are respected, protected, and fulfilled.