A New Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO) ‘Endo SOS’, (Endometriosis in the South of Scotland) has been created to help support people across the South of Scotland.
Trustee Erin Martin Said “Endometriosis is a condition where cells similar to the ones in the lining of the womb are found elsewhere in the body. This can cause chronic pains, infertility, bowel and bladder problems (to name a few!). Endometriosis has been found in every organ in the body. Not forgetting people’s mental health can be affected too. Around 1.5 million women (or assigned female at birth) in the UK are currently living with the condition. That equates to 250,000 individuals who are affected in Scotland. There is currently no cure.
This charity is close to my heart because after years of suffering with debilitating symptoms I was finally diagnosed with endometriosis in 2020. Since then I have been dealing with chronic pain and symptoms that have really taken over my life. Like many others, it’s not only the physical symptoms that I struggle with on a daily basis. I also struggle with the mental health aspect from living with a chronic condition that currently has no cure. The charity’s online support group has been a lifeline for me. It has allowed me to find others that are going through something similar and has helped me feel less alone with my diagnosis. With the free online webinars as well as the relevant signposted information it has allowed me to feel confident to advocate for not only myself but for others living with this awful condition.
In 2019 our founder Tao McCready set up the social media page – Facebook. Tao, 38 from Selkirk “I wanted to create a space that was inclusive to all, with information that was relevant to Scotland. That was factual and up to date, where people could find guidance and support. And to encourage people to advocate for themselves”.
4 years later we are now the first endometriosis awareness and support charity for the South of Scotland. We have 2 of the leading Edinburgh endometriosis specialists on our board of directors and they act as our medical advisors. We also have a further endometriosis specialist as part of our medical advisors, including people with lived experience of the condition. We now have a website where people can find resources all relevant to Scotland – http://www.endosos.org
Endo SOS believes that everyone should have the right to – fast, appropriate care, support, understanding and treatment. We do this by providing online webinars hosting professional experts, informal counselling, educating the sufferers and others, by signposting them to the relevant information. We also spread awareness and work in partnership with other similar organisations.”
The charity also works with The EXPPECT Endometriosis and Pelvic Pain multidisciplinary team at Edinburgh University. Along with supporting and raising awareness in the South of Scotland we hope to generate some much-needed funding for endometriosis research.