Summer 2024 Newsletter

Fourth of July

AWCCS Summer News from Events Convenors

We have more events than ever, with contributing events managers making Glasgow and Edinburgh based events for all ages. Quonya Huff is creating new experiences for families and members are showing up with smiles. The many coffee mornings and evening and weekend events are making more social contact opportunities for all of us. Keep showing up!  Keep checking the website to remind yourself what is on offer, and RSVP. Keep connected. 

While at the date of this publication the club does not have an event manager for a July 4th event, we hope you’ll take photos of your own celebrations and send those Jul 4th photos into me—I will find a way to put the collected photos of each of you onto the website—we shall celebrate Independence Day together virtually, after the fact.  

If you have an idea for an event reach out to me, and we’ll figure out a way to make it happen.

Nancy Lynner

Greetings from your President

Greetings Family

That’s what we are, a family of expats living uncommonly in Scotland. What does that mean? We are a beautiful, diverse group of people with a common goal, finding happiness living abroad. This is still true in 2024. 

How have you been? How is your family? Have you made time for you? Self-care is more important than we think. You’re more important than you think.

There are more of us now, over 100 members and growing, it feels good to feel connected even protected by knowing someone over here shares something in common with me, with us.

As the days get longer, we are putting more activities in place. I have been honoured to have a voice on the BBC Radio Scotland and If feels good to get out and socialise, but it also feels good to stay home and relax. Sometimes it really takes effort to get out that door, but we know you can do it! Our spring has been super busy with Potlucks, Coffee mornings, Walks, Alpaca’s, Porto conference for FAWCO, President’s Tea’s, our AGM at our wonderful and generous board secretary, Kathy’s gorgeous home in Edinburgh and more and the summer is going to be even more. Hope you can join us.

The US consulate in Edinburgh which has been closed for remodelling will finally open in June thank goodness.

Last Summer I had a Bridgerton Ball and this summer, I have taken it to another level.  With Stirling celebrating its 900thbirthday I am doing my part and throwing a weekend Regency extravaganza! The biggest Regency event the UK has ever seen is taking place. Yes, we are going back to the 1800’s and living out our Regency dreams. There is a Soiree on Friday night, a promenade and scavenger hunt on Saturday afternoon at the Smith Museum and the ball Saturday night at the historic Church of the Holy Rude and Cowane Hospital and the afternoon tea on Sunday afternoon. All is totally immersive and interactive. People from around the world are flying in to be a part of the Ton. Please do come along if you would enjoy this and it is in aid of the charity Big Noise

The website is

Also expect another potluck event as well as several more Foodie outings, birthday celebrations, coffee mornings, book clubs, walking events and much more. We want to hear from you as well, get in touch and if you want to start a group or just meet up for drinks after work, please do let us know. I’m hoping that we can expand our group to include Perth, St. Andrews, Fife, they are all a part of our region so please if you meet someone from that area tell them about us.

Just a reminder, I’m not only your president but also the FAWCO Region 1 (England, Ireland, Wales (We don’t have a group in Wales as of today) and Scotland) Coordinator. You are connected around the world through FAWCO.

Last but not least, we are honoured to host this year’s cultural exchange coordinated by none other than the fabulous and multi-talented Amanda Drollinger who just happens to be the Fawco project chair for Awesome Blossoms charity. Ten to 12 youths, children of members from various clubs around the globe will join us here in Scotland where they will have the opportunity to explore Edinburgh, take a Touch Tour at the Festival Theatre of Life of Pi. A guided beach tour at the Seabird Centre in North Berwick and an awesome 5 days up in the Highlands at the Dundreggan Rewilding Centre where they participate in Rewilding and Planting activities. Maybe your child, grandchild can participate next year in the next destination.


Finally, thank you all for being you and for all that you do to support us as a group family. I’m looking forward to seeing you all in the coming months, in one activity or the other.


Best wishes,

Cynthia (The Baroness)

Upcoming Events


Trip to Dumfries House- June 9th
at Dumfries House
9 June 2024 @ 2:00 PM to 4:30 PM
June Coffee Morning – Edinburgh
at Nott
12 June 2024 @ 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Glasgow Coffee Morning June 14th
at Eusebi’s Deli
14 June 2024 @ 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Ballet Black: Heros at Festival Theatre, Edinburgh June 18
at Festival Theatre
18 June 2024 @ 7:30 PM to 10:00 PM
Life of Pi
at Festival Theatre
29 June 2024 @ 1:00 PM to 4:40 PM


Strawberry Picking and Lunch for Families
at Craigie Farm
21 July 2024 @ 11:00 AM to 1:30 PM


Sea Dragons for Under 6s
at LifeCare Centre
18 August 2024 @ 3:30 PM to 4:10 PM

Save The Date

Dear Members:  See our lengthy list of further upcoming activities available for all our AWCCS members – this is for all our pan Central Scotland, you can go to any activity irrespective of where you live.


Edinburgh Based        Glasgow Based           Virtual Activities



June 23rd Sunday – New Comer’s tea at Butterfly and the Pig

June 24th Monday Kahoot  7:15 to 9pm

June 30th Sunday  Scottish Seabird Centre – Day of Conservation 



July 20th Saturday – Necropolis tour  Glasgow (all welcome)



August 24th Saturday  – GOMA – coffee morning 10 to noon 

August 25th Sunday – Burrell Collection – Degas exhibit 



September 4th Wednesday – Burrell Collection – Degas Exhibit 

September 6th Friday – Lunch at John Lewis Cafeteria Edinburgh 

September 11th Wednesday – Coffee Morning – Edinburgh 

September 12th Thursday  Birthday Bash Edinburgh 

September 13th Friday – Coffee Morning Glasgow 

September 15th Sunday – Kilt Walk – Edinburgh

No Kahoot in September



October 3rd – Thursday – Kahoot 7:15 to 9pm

October 5th Saturday – Walking tour south Leith Parish church & cemetery

October 9th Wednesday – Robert Burns visit (rescheduled date) Alloway

October 13th Sunday – Glasgow Mural Walk

October 22nd Tuesday  – Glasgow meal out 


Message from Activity / Events convenors:  Please let us know what you think about this format for our Calendar of activities / events.    Our members are welcome to make suggestions of things to do / places to go.   Suggestions are invited and welcome.


KAHOOT! Connections


By Nancy Lynner

The AWCCS includes a wide geographic area. Zoom and video calls like it allow us to have virtual meetings which enhance our friendships.

Currently our club uses ZOOM in two ways and you can participate in both.

KAHOOT! Is an online trivia game and Mary Joe Bone-Caselton is the Emcee. We meet online one a month, ten months of the year. Our Kahoot! Sessions become silly quite easily but not for long, as we move through our chosen quizzes. We all learn new facts, especially when we don’t know correct answers.  We also discovered early on that those who make the quiz questions are not always correct.  This tempers the disappointment of a loosing streak.  

Playing Kahoot! Requires two devises—one to communicate with your fellow attendees and to read the trivia questions, and one (a phone) to use to log your answers.


The second way ZOOM is used by our club is for the monthly Board Meetings. This makes it easy to participate in Board Meetings regardless of where you live. All members have always been welcomed to attend board meetings. 


Both Kahoot! And Board meetings are on a week night, allowing the most members possible to fit it into their schedule.   You can tell a board member if you wish to attend a meeting, and you may sign up for KAHOOT!  through the email invitations for events.

Recent Events

There have been several fun events over the last few months. Picture above you can see the Stirling old town tour, February cakes, cookies and tea and dinner at China Rose. All were a great success.

The AWCCS AGM was recently held at Kathy McGlew’s, thanks to her. The AGM was a potluck and it was fabulous. Our speaker from The Food Train taught us all about their important work.

We heard from each board member plus Amanda explained the Fawco Youth Cultural Volunteer Program. Best of all we got the inside scoop from Vicki Ting about the US Consulate Edinburgh’s renovation schedule. 32 attended. 

Club Announcements

Food Train our 2024/25 charity

We are working on raising funds for our chosen charity, the Food Train. If you attended the AGM, you were able to meet and hear from Chris Curtis and Allyson Ralph about the important work they do to help homebound elderly people obtain groceries and maintain social connections. The AWCCS charity coordinator, Ellie Fisher, will be participating in the Kiltwalk in Edinburgh on 15 September 2024. Three walk lengths are available – Mighty Stride (approx. 21 miles), Big Stroll (approx. 11 miles) and Wee Wander (approx. 5 miles). The cost for registration is £20 for the Mighty Stride and the Big Stroll, £12.50 for adults in the Wee Wander and £6.50 for children. If you are interested in participating in the Kiltwalk, please email, for more details.

The Kilbrandon Fund

During 2021–23 the Kilbrandon Fund was the AWCCS’s chosen charity, to which we donated £1,100 at our 2023 AGM. Two of their Trustees attended the AGM, presented an overview of the Fund’s activities, and accepted our cheque. In keeping with a promise to report back on the type of things our funds contributed to in the past year, Jim Scott, their Administrator, recently sent the following summary:


“SInce May 2023, the Fund has supported 21 children/young people and their families with grants totalling over £4,700. This has funded activities such as 

  • Family holidays
  • Dance competition
  • Riding lessons
  • House furniture
  • Football kit and equipment
  • Education and tutorial fees
  • Computer equipment

This is not an exhaustive list.


I hope you and your club are all well and once again, we thank you for your help. Without the assistance through donations such as yours, many of Edinburgh’s young people would miss out on the nice-to-do activities that the majority take for granted.”


For newer AWCCS members, the Kilbrandon Fund is named after the head of the committee that set up the Children’s Hearing System, a system unique to Scotland, where it operates to keep children out of the judicial system. The Fund operates “to relieve hardship and distress in cases referred to the Panel, to purchase essential items to benefit a child’s development and welfare”. Administered in Edinburgh by a group of Children’s Panel members, it gives small grants, currently up to £300, to improve the lives of some of the most disadvantaged children in Edinburgh, who are under the supervision of the local authority because of home and family circumstances and where no other resources are available to meet that need. It is the kind of charity to which our donation can make a definitive difference.

Member News


Kristin Love
Page Munro
Hannah Martinez 
Anne Brown
Candace Silvera
Suzanne Luft
Patricia Peters
Dale Finlayson
Delma Dewar
Shannon Lei



Cynthia Holden
Pamela Diaz 
Jennifer Bradtke
Rebecca Nelson 
Alison Bruce 
Teresa Dokey
Kedzie Penfield 
Kofi Brown 
Katie McGlew
Christine MacLachlan


Courtney McClymont
Sallie Redman
Debbie Allan 
Annie Hudson 
Rachel DuBois 
Michelle Oleson
Ceceley Chambers
Yvonne Willcocks
Catherine Dunlop

Welcome New Members

Kristin Love 
Pamela Diaz 
Lacey Gibson-Ward
Rachel DuBois 
Christine Scott
Annie Hudson 
Debbie Allan 

Edinburgh Book Group



Friday, 21 June 


by Ann Patchett

Home of Marily Macvicar

Start time: 10:30


Our books , dates, and venues for July & September

have yet to be chosen – members will be notified.

Don’t forget the Book Festival in August!


FAWCO Youth Program

FAWCO Youth Cultural Volunteers Program 2024 will take place in Scotland June 28 – July 7, 2024


AWC Central Scotland is the host Club. Click here for PROGRAM DESCRIPTION. Mary Jo Bone-Caselton, Amanda Drollinger, Stacey Harris- Papaioannou, Carole Henderson, Nancy Lynner and Cynthia and Angus Holden are our hosts. Thank you to Kathy McGlew and Michele Wirt for their accommodation support of the program and Dale Finlayson for her support of the Farewell Dinner. 


AWCCS will be hosting 13 youth from FAWCO clubs and our club youth. We will have events in the Central belt and five days in the Highlands. A theatre outing to The Life of Pi and to The Scottish Seabird centre are open to all AWCCS club members to join us and get to know this interesting youth community. Find out more about the FAWCO Youth Cultural Volunteers Program on the FAWCO website ( and in due course see the video and personal essays from our 2024 program.

Upcoming FAWCO events:


Preparing for University Admissions in the US/UK/EU for International Families 

presented by LAUNCH Education Advisors

Essential preparation for anyone thinking of university – especially the Classes of 2026 and 2027! Learn how student experiences vary in different countries, general financial expectations in each region, and the modern admissions requirements for international students. Your questions answered!

This webinar is free to FAWCO members and there are two different times available:

Tuesday, June 4, 11 am CET – Register here


Thursday, June 6, 7 pm CET – Register here


For the young and the young at heart, Thursday, June 20, 8 pm CET: Under40 Happy Hour – Goals Check In

Register via email:



Have you registered to vote in this year’s election?

In many constituencies the Overseas Vote may prove decisive – so make sure that yours is one of those votes! Unlike voters in the US, Overseas Americans must register annually in order to be assured of receiving a ballot; some states or Local Election Officials (LEOs) may send your ballot on the basis of previous registrations, but others – particularly those concerned about voter fraud and suspicious of Overseas voters – may not. It is a myth that Overseas votes may not be counted. It is required under Federal law that all votes, including those from Overseas, must be counted before the election is certified, and the Overseas vote can provide the “margin of victory” in a close election – and could overturn an election that has already been called. 


Registering to vote has never been easier. There are three websites on which you can register:

    The US Vote Foundation (,

    The Federal Voting Assistance Program (FVAP) (

    Vote From Abroad  (VFA) (

The third, which is a non-partisan, public service site set up by the Democratic Party Committee, in my view is the easiest, but all will do the job. FVAP is a site set up by the Federal Government for Overseas voters. Most states will allow you to email your registration form (known as the FPCA, Federal Post Card Application), but the site will tell you whether or not your state permits it.


Once you have registered, it is a good idea to contact your LEO to make sure your application has been received and accepted, though many will email you a confirmation.


The ballot is required to be sent out to Overseas voters 45 days before the election, which in 2024 is September 21st. If your ballot is not received within a reasonable time after that date, contact your LEO.


Fill out your ballot carefully before returning it. Particularly in states that claim high levels of voter fraud, your ballot may be subjected to a higher level of scrutiny that those cast in the US. All states will email your ballot, but 20 states require them to be returned through the mail. Five states, including California and Nevada, will accept ballots by mail or fax, but not by email. If you do not have a fax, there is an app that will convert a PDF into a fax. Or you can email a scan of your ballot materials to, from where they will be faxed to your LEO. You can find fax and email guidelines on


Complete and return your ballot as soon as possible after you receive it. The top reason Overseas ballots are not accepted is that they arrive too late to be counted. Then confirm that your ballot has been received and accepted, either on your state website or with your LEO.


Back-up:  If you sent in an FPCA but have not received your ballot, or your LEO says the FPCA was not received, you can generate a Federal Write-in Absentee Ballot (FWAB) on This does not mean you have voted twice. If your LEO receives both ballots by the deadline, only your state ballot will be counted.


If you need help, you can get it on in the “Feedback” tab or via VFA using the

red icon on the lower right of the landing page. VFA also offers live voter help via Zoom: go to


For nonpartisan voting information, follow votefromabroad on Instagram, FB, Linked In, TikTok, and You Tube.

What’s going on in the United States?

Do you find it difficult to access reliable information about what is going on in the US in this crucial election year? Democrats Abroad Scotland member Penny Ciancanelli has complied the following list of podcasts, albeit with a Democrat bias. Do you know other reliable sources? Let us know and we will list them in a future newsletter. 


Penny suggests that one way to find any of them is to go to the Apple podcast app, which she relies on. Alternatively, search for the podcast by the title and various download options will appear. 


The title of the podcast is underlined below, and this should suffice as a search term.


1. Daily News Bulletin from the DSR network, a DC-based group of political Democrat Party insiders who present and discuss top news of the day (20-30 minutes). Search for either title.

2. The Al Franken Show. Once a week Al interviews someone about election issues.  

3. Fast Politics with Molly Jong-Fast. Three times a week several interviews in each on topics of importance in the election. She often interviews lesser-known Dem Party candidates for Congress running in swing states.

4. Amicus. Once a week Dalia Lithwick discusses legal issues in the news, ranging from Trump’s various criminal cases to recent women’s health and reproductive rights issues arising from the Dobbs decision.

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