Furnishing Futures …

Castle Enterprise Scotland is a Fife-based charity that’s “dedicated to supporting the community through a variety of integrated services“. The charity marked their 30th anniversary last year. We caught up with Silvia Ingram to discover more about their work in and around Cupar …

Silvia explains: “The charity was founded in response to a community need identified by the local social work department and Stratheden Hospital. Initially, the focus was on providing furniture for those in need as well as offering meaningful occupation for patients at Stratheden Hospital.” She adds: “Our first operation began in a cupboard in the church at Castle Terrace in St. Andrews — hence our name, Castle.

That was in 1993. Throughout three decades, the partnerships formed with Stratheden and the social work department have endured and strengthened, underpinning the charity’s ongoing commitment to mental health and community support. Silvia explains that it is this “foundational relationship” that has guided their growth and continues to influence services to this day, “reflecting a deep-rooted dedication to community welfare and sustainable practices“.

Support & Services …

The organisation provides “essential household items, mental health support, job training, and rehabilitation opportunities” and has grown from their original base in St Andrews to include multiple facilities with their main branches in Cupar and Glenrothes.

Silvia says: “We focus on sustainable practices, community welfare, and empowering individuals who are furthest from the job market through a variety of programs aimed at rehabilitation and reintegration.” Within this work, they provide an extensive Befriending Program offering both one-to-one befriending and social gatherings to foster community ties and support. One of their proudest achievements is the transformative impact they have helping people back into the workplace through tailored support and accredited CPD training. Sylvia says: “Over time, we have helped hundreds of individuals build confidence and acquire valuable skills, supporting their journey into sustainable employment. Additionally, we take great pride in our partnership with Stratheden Hospital, where we offer supported, meaningful occupation in our workshops for residential patients. These workshops provide a therapeutic and productive environment, helping individuals in their recovery and rehabilitation process. This focus on empowering people and enhancing their quality of life stands at the core of our mission, reflecting our commitment to social and economic improvement within our community.

In addition they manage the Castle Home Hub, providing essential household items such as toiletries, bedding, and kitchen essentials to those in need. Silvia adds: “Our furniture reuse initiative – better known as The Castle Furniture Project – is housed in a 12,000 sq ft warehouse in Cupar and redistributes donated furniture and household goods to disadvantaged families and individuals, promoting environmental sustainability while aiding in poverty alleviation.” As Sylvia explains: “This inclusive approach not only addresses material needs but also fosters a sense of purpose and belonging among participants, many of whom are taking steps towards rebuilding their lives.

You can read more by clicking on the image below.

Fife-wide benefits …

The project provides the transport and labour to collect donations free of charge from people throughout Fife. These donations are brought to the warehouse where they are sorted, assessed for condition, repaired where possible, renovated when feasible, and displayed in Cupar.

​Crucially, the project offers marginalised groups opportunities to work in a safe, supportive and inclusive environment. Sylvia adds: “For many who lead chaotic lifestyles it is the first tentative step to leading a more structured life.Being in a position to help others is a core element of this process and the furniture which the project collects and redistributes enables individuals to help other people who are facing extreme hardship. It is this hidden element of the project’s work – providing a truly inclusive environment – that provides a service where vulnerable people assist others in need whilst delivering a much-needed services to the wider community … economical, socially and environmentally.

In support of the Cupar site, the charity has premises in Glenrothes that specializes in the refurbishment of domestic appliances – a key component of the overall service. The Glenrothes branch also provides training and development opportunities, helping individuals gain valuable skills and work experience. Additionally, it houses a Castle Home Hub, specifically serving the Glenrothes community by providing essential household items and support. Together, these sites work in synergy to extend the charity’s reach, support and positive and impact across Fife.

An holistic approach …

Our charity’s USP is its comprehensive and integrated services. Sylvia explains: “Unlike many ‘furniture reuse’ projects, we deliver a multi-faceted community support system that includes mental health services, job readiness programs, and essential home supplies. This holistic approach ensures that while we meet immediate material needs, we also provide a pathway for personal and social development, which differentiates us from other charities.

The charity employs 22 dedicated staff members, each contributing uniquely to their mission. Their operations and strategic decisions are overseen by a committed Board of Trustees who ensure that they continue to meet their goals of community support and sustainable development.

Get involved …

The charity is always on the look out for keen volunteers. You can click on the image below to read more and to follow their link to complete a Volunteer Application Form.

As with all of our profiles, we asked Sylvia what she would recommend to someone visiting Cupar for the first time, or for the first time in a long time: “I would recommend a walk along the River Eden. It offers a tranquil escape into nature, then head for lunch to the lovely Cupar Tearoom at Ferguson Square. It is a must, known for its great service and good food!

Make a donation …

Are you able to support the charity? You can do so by donating goods that they will collect from your premises.

To arrange a collection, please complete their online ​form by clicking on the block below …

Urgent Appeal

The charity seeks your support to help local families in need by collecting donations of basic toiletries and cleaning products.  Your generous contributions, including items like toothpaste, shampoo, soap, and laundry detergent, will make a significant difference in their day-to-day lives. You can drop off donations at any of their three store locations.


Need more?

You can find more on the charity via their website. You can follow their updates on Facebook. If you have an enquiry, you can call them on 01334 654445 or email them via this link.

And if you are on the lookout for any pre-loved furniture, funishings, new and refurbished electrical goods as well as pictures, mirrors and more … click on the block below to visit their online store.

Thanks for reading!