NEWS

News


The Older People’s Commissioner for Wales 

KNOW YOUR RIGHTS

We all have rights. Your rights are important and understanding them can help you ensure that you are treated fairly and not discriminated against.
Laws such as the Human Rights Act, the Equality Act, the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act and the Regulation and Inspection of Social Care (Wales) Act exist to protect your rights and governments, health boards, and local authorities (known in law as public bodies) must uphold and respect your rights
.
Right Not To Be Discriminated Against
Age is a protected characteristic under the Equality Act.  This places a legal requirement on public bodies to avoid direct or indirect discrimination.
As well as age, it is illegal to discriminate against someone based on their sex, race, disability, pregnancy or maternity, sexual orientation, religion or belief, or gender reassignment.
The Human Rights Act makes it illegal to discriminate against you accessing your human rights.

Dignity and Respect
Under the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act, care professionals are required to treat you with dignity and respect.
The Mental Capacity Act protects the right of people to participate in decisions about their lives as fully as possible.
The Human Rights Act prohibits torture and inhuman treatment.

Decisions that Affect You
The Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act states that you have the right to have your voice heard in decisions made about any care or support you receive. If you do not have someone who can help you to have your voice heard, you may have the right to an Independent Professional Advocate.
The Mental Health Act gives you the right to be involved in decisions about healthcare, support and treatment relating to your mental health. This includes the right to have the support of an Independent Mental Health Advocate.
The Mental Capacity Act gives you the right, in certain circumstances, to the support of an Independent Mental Capacity Advocate to ensure that decisions are taken in your best interest.
If a decision is being made about someone else who lacks mental capacity and you are speaking on their behalf, you also have the right to the support of an Independent Mental Capacity Advocate.

Right to Work Whatever Your Age
There is no compulsory retirement age in the UK. Employers used to be able to force workers to retire at the age of 65, but this has been abolished.
In some cases, an employer can force you to retire by law. This is known as ‘compulsory retirement age’. If they do this, they must give you a good reason why.
You may still be made redundant from your job or be dismissed if you are unable to do your job, but these decisions must not be taken because of your age.

Right to Have a Say About Where and how You Live
The Human Rights Act protects you against interference with your home life.
The Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act gives you the right to participate in decisions about your care and support including where you live and to have your independence and well-being promoted.
If you move to a care home, you should be consulted on where you want to live and whether you are happy to share a room.
If you live in a care home or receive homecare you have the right to set out your personal preferences about how your care is delivered.

Right to Health
The right to health is internationally recognised as a fundamental human right.
Although there is no specific UK law which protects your right to health, the United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights and International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights gives you the right to the highest standard of health.
This does not mean that you are entitled to any type of treatment. The Government must provide the highest possible standards of healthcare, taking into account a variety of factors, including cost.
If you have any concerns about your care or treatment, you should raise them with your GP or with healthcare professionals. If you do not wish to talk to the staff concerned or it doesn’t help, you can also raise your concerns with the Health Board via the ‘Putting Things Right’ process. A family member, friend or representative of the Community Health Council (free, confidential advice & support service) can support you.

Right to be Safe and Protected
The Human Rights Act protects you from being treated in an inhuman or degrading way. Public bodies are therefore legally required to ensure that your rights are upheld.
The Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act requires a local authority to investigate if it suspects that you are at risk of abuse and neglect and take action to protect you if it decides that you are at risk.

Right to be You
The Human Rights Act protects your rights as an individual. This includes respect for family and home life, freedom of belief, expression and assembly, and protection from discrimination.
The Equality Act requires people and organisations that provide services and goods to respect your rights as an individual.
The Welsh Language (Wales) Measure gives the Welsh language equal status with English in Wales. Many public bodies must comply with Welsh Language Standards, which set out how organisations are expected to use the Welsh language in different situations.

 

Transport user Voice – March 2019.

  

Lots of transport news in the latest edition of TransportFocus

Minutes of January health forum.

  

Cardiff Bus travel centre is moving

  

Our travel centre is moving

Our travel centre is relocating!  We’re moving from Cardiff’s Central Library to the old Ticketline office at 47 Westgate Street.

The new office will be open to customers from 10am on Monday 4th of March, and will offer the same services as we do currently in the library.

Opening Hours 

Mondays to Fridays – 10am – 6pm
Saturdays – 10am- 4pm
Sundays – closed

We look forward to seeing you soon!

Question Time Debate – The Generation Gap: Are older people limiting the opportunities of younger people?

  

A Question Time Debate has been organised by the Forum for the 7th   March. There will be speakers from the Older Peoples Commissioner’s Office, the Vale Youth Forum and Cardiff and Vale College and the debate starts at 6.30 pm in Barry Memorial Hall. Please spread the word and come along for some lively debate.  Teas and coffees will be served in the interval. Please see poster for more details.

The Welsh Government has recently consulted on “Connected Communities- Tackling loneliness and isolation” This is an important issue for older people ,people with disabilities and carers and our response can be read in full.

  

Response to  consultation:  Connected Community-Tackling Loneliness and Social Isolation.

Response from Vale of Glamorgan 50+ Forum.

Contact:  R. G. Walton, Chair of Health and Equalities Group.

The Forum  welcomes the Welsh Government focus on Loneliness and Isolation. Rather than respond to each question we will comment on the issues of definition and then make suggestions about priorities and a strategic approach from Welsh Government. We have concerns that by attempting such a broad approach the efforts of Welsh Government may be too diluted and fail to achieve much needed change. Although we are an organisation for older people we recognise that loneliness can affect people at any stage of their life.

Defining Loneliness and Isolation. 

We broadly agree with the definitions in the consultation document. More attention could have been given to the different character and contexts of loneliness across the lifespan and to the distinctions between transient and chronic isolation and loneliness. It should be recognised that individuals vary in their propensity to socialise and it is their right to decide how much they wish to participate in community life Whilst it is beneficial for a community to ensure there are plentiful opportunities to engage in social activities people should not be dragooned into these and their right to be a more private individuals should be respected. Nor should individuals be valued less if they choose not to participate. Being lonely is not a pathological state and in many circumstances  involving loss (bereavement, disruption of relationships, losing a job, physical separation) is quite normal.  Where the community and state  should be concerned is if the loneliness and isolation is prolonged and causing unhappiness and distress

In attempting to identify trigger points it should be recognised that each person experiences them differently. There is no standard way of dealing with them . Where people wish to look for support  they need information about available services which may supplement any support from family and friends or be invaluable if these are not available. It is relevant that in the situation of bereavement many of the former  rites of mourning  have vanished and individuals may be expected to resume their normal life straight away . In emphasising the concept of resilience there is the danger that people may be considered lesser individuals if they do not pull themselves together – more a sign of lack of community understanding than a failure of the individual concerned.

The consultation tends to focus more on loneliness than isolation. But enforced isolation violates peoples’ rights to participate  in community life. Examples would be people with serious physical or mental disabilities  and learning disabilities, carers for frail older people and those with dementia and cares for severely disabled children . Not only the affected person but also their carers become isolated through lack of respite care (which has been reduced in recent years). These groups may be virtual prisoners in their homes. There are special issues  for women who may be wary of going out alone . Living on average longer than men they are more likely to face bereavement and loss of friends. Often having  had long term caring roles women may have difficulties in taking up former social activities they once enjoyed

The role of Welsh Government.

The role of Welsh Government  is twofold.  It can encourage and promote in all public bodies and private employers sensitivity to situations which may lead  to isolation and loneliness.  It can also take more direct action to ensure that social care , health authorities and the third sector tackle the cooperate to identify and tackle the most serious manifestations of isolation and loneliness. Therefore we suggest that Welsh Government should consider a tiered approach.

Tier 1:   Supporting all organisations to be inclusive and respect the right to participate in community life. Encourage the creation of social environments (schools, workplaces, shopping centres, residential areas, hospitals, care homes) which create opportunities for participation. Welsh Government could consider developing guidance to assist this.

Tier 2:   Provision of information. Ensure that at key locations information is available for individuals and professionals about services which could support those experiencing isolation and loneliness. E.g. for bereavemen,t at GPs, hospitals and Registrars offices. For  local opportunities (recreation .exercise ,social   groups at) libraries and information centres.  It is important that all those in touch with people who have been recently bereaved or suffered life changing health problems are able ton link people with the relevant information.

Tier 3:   Specific  Welsh Government action to develop service which would alleviate loneliness and isolation.  This would include increasing the availability of respite care for cares and enablng housebound people to participate in community life.  Could the Regional Partnership Boards take a lead role in ensuring that health , social care and third sector organisations cooperate to extend these services? Availability of public transport is a key issue . How are people to access community activities without access to transport? A review of bus and community transport is urgently needed as these services have contracted in recent years. Poorer people often have no car or access to a car and are disproportionately affected. These are priority issues and Welsh Government has the responsibility to secure the necessary financing. In the Vale for several years we had an excellent befriending project , but with the end of lottery funding this project lapsed . Sustainability cannot be achieved without more secure funding for similar projects. It  would be a singular achievement for Wales for every part of Wales to have a befriending scheme in place.

Tiers 1 and 2 could reasonably be expected to be carried forward with very little funding; attitude change and sensitivity are the key elements . Tier 3 would require additional funding which could only come from Welsh Government via local authority , health and third sector funding.

We feel it is vital not just to draw attention to the issue but for positive action to emerge from the consultation.

TFW – Fair and simple compensation

  

From 29 January 2019, the point from which our customers can claim compensation for delayed journeys has been reduced from 30 minutes to 15 minutes.

For more information, please visit tfwrail.wales/delay-repay-compensation where you can claim online or pick up a compensation form from your nearest ticket office.

Delay Repay offers a wide choice of repayment options, including bank transfer and Paypal.

Don’t forget to keep your ticket to make a claim. If you claim online you can also opt to donate your compensation to our chosen charity railwaychildren.org.

Transport for Wales

Next Transport meeting 12th Feb 2019

  

The next meeting of the transport group will be on 12th feb in committee room 2 of the civic offices barry. The paperwork is here:

Agenda

Chairmans Report

Mins of Mtg 11th December 2018

Changes to Cardiff bus fares

  

Our fares are changing from Sunday 3rd February

We strive to offer fares that are value for money whilst maintaining a widespread network or routes, as a result, the increase to fares from Sunday 3rd of February has been kept as minimal as possible.

Our app tickets will still be discounted to offer even better value.  In addition, tickets which are exclusive to the app offer customers the opportunity to purchase bundles of single or return tickets at a reduced price e.g. customers can travel for as little as £1.60 per journey with our 10 single ticket offer.

In the last couple of years, we have invested in new vehicles with latest technology including on-bus next stop audio and visual announcements; contactless payment to make every day travel simpler and boarding times faster; and have also introduced online top-up for the convenience of our iff card customers.

Click here to see the new prices effective from Sunday 3rd February.

The BIG Volunteering Fayre

  

Glamorgan Voluntary Services (GVS) will be hosting The BIG Volunteering Fayre on Wednesday 23rd January 2019 from 10 am – 2.30 pm at Barry Memorial Hall. The BIG Volunteering Fayre is an ideal opportunity to showcase your charity and community group to promote your volunteering opportunities.

The BIG Volunteering Fayre will have a wealth of prospective volunteers in attendance so with limited spaces book today!

Vale 50+ forum will be at the fair and hope to see you visit our stand where you can learn all about our work.

If you represent an organisation and would like to attend the Fayre and book a stall, please contact GVS on Tel: 01446 741706

January’s BIG Volunteer Fayre was attended by over 50 volunteering providers with over 300 people attending looking for a volunteering placement.

ART CRAFT AND LEISURE MEETING: TUESDAY NOVEMBER 27TH 2018

  

ACL members met for the final time this year in the Board Room, at Barry County Library. The weather, dictated the move from the Phil John, as an Autumn storm caused a severe roof leak. Thankfully Chris Edwards, the Vale Librarian, was on hand to organize the move. As this meeting celebrates the ACL pre Festive feast, thankfully no food was damaged !!

Chair gave a brief Forum update to the members present. John Porter, is unlikely to continue in his role as Strategy Coordinator after the New Year. John, sadly has been on the sick since September. Hopefully he will be back with the Vale Council in January. Chair spoke to John after the ACL meeting, and he was in good spirits. He will be missed by all of us.

Arts News : The current Exhibition, The First World War: A Commemorative Anniversary featuring Charles Burton, painter and Peter Catrell, photographer, finishes on December 1st. The succeeding Exhibition in Art Central Gallery features the work of the Pembrokeshire artist, Philip Muirden. This will open on December 8th and run through until January 19th. Currently, this Gallery is a free admission one. Open every day 9.30am to 4.30pm Saturdays 10 am until 4pm. The Winter Exhibition at the Travellers Gallery, Barry Broad Street Station, is open Monday to Friday 7am to 12 noon, throughout December, excluding 25th /26th. Also free entry, sales from the café, benefit Mind Charity. Brian Power, an ACL members is exhibiting at the Travellers from Monday January 7th 2019. Brian is our oldest member and unwell at present, so unable to make this meeting.

The speaker for November was Anthony Lavisher, a prolific author from Llantwit Major. Anthony last visited ACL in September 2014. At that time he was working at Barry Library. and had completed two parts of his fantasy Trilogy. Namely ‘Whispers’, and ‘Shadows of A Storm’. The final part which was completed earlier this year is ‘Vengeance of A Storm’. He has also produced a modern novel, ‘The Last Tiger.’ Copies of the Trilogy are to be found in Vale Libraries, or, for sale on Amazon. £20 for the three novels, or £8 for a individual book.
2019 promising to an exciting year for this modest writer, as he has been offered a contract with STEELSAGE PRESS (USA). They will reset his work for sale, States side. Chair thanked Anthony for his interesting presentation and he was warmly applauded by the members. He then joined ACL for their Annual Festive Tea.

Members present : Gilly Davies: Chair, Anne Marie Little, Ron Walton, Lee Stuart, Elaine Harvey, Ellie Lewis, Ann Sear, Val Walters, Carole Williams, Mark Collard, who provided the seasonal music, Tracey Harding, Vale Arts Development Officer, and Chris Edwards, Vale Librarian.

Apologies : Brian Power, Mair Phillips and Mari Major.

Chair thanked all members for their continuing support during 2018, and the dates for 2019 were given to members.

All meetings are on a Tuesday afternoon.
Dates are: January 22nd, March 26th, May 28th, July 23rd, September 24th and November 26th.

Meetings are held in the Phil John Room, Barry County Library. Times 2.30pm to 4.30pm.

Gilly Davies: Chair: Arts, Crafts and Leisure Group Vale 50+ Forum.

New bus station to be built at the University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff

  

A new bus station will be built at Wales’ biggest hospital.

The new transport interchange will be built at the main entrance of University Hospital Wales to focus bus drop-offs and pick-ups to a single area within the site.

Tackling roadside nitrogen dioxide concentrations in Wales – Publication of the Welsh Government supplemental plan

  

Further to the consultation that was undertaken between 25 April and 19 June, you may wish to be aware that we have today published our final Welsh Government supplemental plan to the UK plan for tackling roadside nitrogen dioxide concentrations 2017.

A link to the plan is provided below:-

https://gov.wales/topics/environmentcountryside/epq/airqualitypollution/airquality/?lang=en

An announcement of the publication is available at the following web link:-

https://gov.wales/newsroom/environmentandcountryside/2018/181129-new-plan-to-tackle-roadside-air-pollution/?lang=en

Vale of Glamorgan Public Transport for Christmas and New Year 2018/19.

  

The transport arrangements for Christmas 2018 and New Year have been published by the Vale of Glamorgan council in this document

Transport meeting minutes for 11th December

  

Here are the minutes of the recent transport group meeting:

Transport Group Mins of Mtg 11th December 2018

We also enjoyed a festive lunch:

Transport xmas meal 2018

Vale of Glamorgan Libraries – Home Borrower Service

  

Delivering library books to your home!

Vale of Glamorgan Libraries run a Home Library Service where volunteers will deliver books to people in their homes. This free service is ideal for anyone who can no longer get to a library themselves because of mobility, caring responsibilities or other issues. Every four weeks a volunteer will drop off a bag of books for the reader and collect the previous month’s books.

The volunteer can bring books in a number of formats – ordinary print, large print or talking books on CD. As the reader, all you need to do is give the volunteer an idea of the kind of books you like – books by a particular author, for example, or historical, crime, romances or non-fiction – the choice is yours!

If you think this service might be just what you are looking for or if you know of someone who could benefit from it, please call Melanie on 02920 708438 for more information.

www.valeofglamorgan.gov.uk/libraries

Public Toilets consultation

  

The Council has a requirement to prepare a toilet strategy for the Vale of Glamorgan. They would like your views on a range of issues relating to current and future provision.

https://www.snapsurveys.com/wh/s.asp?k=154089781465

South Wales Fire and Rescue Service Consultation

  

The South Wales Fire and Rescue Service has just published its plans for 2019 – 2020. They would like to consult with members of the public to see if you agree with the seven priorities that they have identified.

The consultation only takes a few minutes.

Welsh version – https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/RTCFV9C
English version – https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/SW-FR-S

The Art Craft and Leisure Group 25th September

  

The Art Craft and Leisure Group last met on September 25th at the Phil John Room, Barry Library.  Presenters at this meeting were, Kate Long, Memo Arts Centre, Barry, and Tracey Harding, Vale Council Arts Development Officer, based at Art Central Gallery, Barry Library. Both gave an in depth Autumn/Winter Community Arts update to A.C.L. members present.  Programmes of events were handed out to those in attendance.  More information on both organisations can be found via The Vale Council website.

 

Arts New

Current Exhibition at Art Central until October 20th is the work of local artist, Frankie Locke.  Namely, ‘Slate Glass Clay’ Frankie works in a variety of media, paint, ceramics and photography.  The current Exhibition at ‘The Travellers Gallery’, Broad Street station, Vale Ways @ Railways and continues until October 19th .  Both of these Exhibitions are free to view. The Travellers Café supports Mind Charity and is sponsored by VOGA. Vale of Glamorgan Artists. Penarth Town Council are hosting a number of literary events throughout the town, during September, as part of Penarth History month. See Griffin Books for more information.

Forum News: At the Forum AGM on September 21st , John Porter made the sad announcement that from the end of 2018, his post as the Vale 50+Strategy Coordinator would become invalid. He has held this post since the summer of 2010. He was instrumental in setting up ACL as a Positive Ageing Agenda Group. A number of us formed a steering committee to facilitate this idea, and, the Group held its first meeting in May 2011.

Our November meeting, always a Pre-Festive gathering, is to be held on Tuesday, November 27th, Phil John Room, commencing at 2.30pm.  Members are asked to provide contributions for a Finger Buffet.  Easy to Eat food, Mince Pies, Sausage Rolls, Mini Quiches and Chocolate Biscuits. Hot/cold drinks will be provided.  Sorry, No Alcohol!!

Our Guest Speaker will be Author, Anthony Lavisher. This is a return visit for him as he has now completed the third part of his Trilogy.

Also he has written a modern novel, so hopefully an informative, lively Pre- Festive meeting for ACL members.

Hope to see you all on November 27th.

Gilly Davies: Chair: ACL Group. Vale 50+ Forum.

ARTS CRAFTS and LEISURE meeting held on July 24th 2018.

  

ACL holds meetings in the Phil John Room at Barry County Library. These meetings are held in the months of January, March, May, July, September and November. Timings are 2.30pm to 4.30pm.  The Group was formed in 2011, and the first meeting was in May of that year.

 The Chair, Gilly Davies, provides speakers that have a broad dynamic appeal, as the title implies. Art and Craft are easily catered for, Leisure is open to interpretation ! Of the six meetings, three are usually Art/Craft based, the remaining ones cover Leisure interests. These can range from history, genealogy, literature and popular culture, holidays, gardening and music.

 The latest meeting, held on July 24th, welcomed Mark Collard as a guest to the Group. Mark, a talented singer composer gave the members a taste of his latest musical production. He is hopeful that the opening night will be next Spring in Barry. He also delighted members by performing a solo in Welsh. Mark usually performs duets at charitable functions with his wife.

 Members present: Gilly Davies Chair, Ron Walton, Ellie Lewis, Elaine Hardy, Anne Marie Little, Lee Stuart, Brian Power, Val Walters, Melanie Weekes, Kalpana Natarjan, and Mark Collard. Apologies: Tracey Harding, Mair Phillips and Ann Sear.

 Art News: Current Exhibition at Art Central  ‘Developments’ by Peter Sainty. Runs from July 28th to September 8th. 10am to 4.30pm, Monday to Saturday. Travellers Gallery Café,  Broad Street Station, Barry. Open Summer Exhibition, runs to September 1st. Monday to Friday 7am to 12noon. Both Free Exhibitions.  Proceeds from the Café benefit Mind Charity. 

Melanie Weekes, Barry Librarian, gave out Barry Library holiday activities sheets for children, to the  group. Melanie, a supporter of ACL, transfers to Penarth Library in September for two years.

Forum News: AGM date: Friday September 21st at the Corporate Suite, Civic Offices Barry. Registration from 9.30am. Helene Herkots, the new Older Persons Commissioner will be the keynote speaker. Members were reminded to register their intention to attend this Annual Event, with John Porter, 50+ Forum Coordinator.

 Next Meeting: Tuesday, September 25th 2018 , Phil John Room, Barry Library. Time: 2.30pm

Transport group trip to Brecon 22nd August

  

Day excursion to Brecon for members of the
Vale 50+ ForumTransport Group.
This is being offered as a ‘turn up on the day’ event.
No advance booking required. As this is a public bus service
it is not possible to pre-book seats in advance seat of travel.

V50+SF Brecon Trip 2018

Rath Yatra Festival

  

Celebrate Rath Yatra

Festival of songs and refreshment

Click image for details

Housing for Older People and Falls Prevention

  

The Housing group has been focusing on Housing for Older People. It is the case that older people encounter difficulties as they become infirm and need care so they may live a comfortable life that is meaningful and satisfies their wellbeing needs. It means making difficult choices whether to remain in their current home or whether they choose to downsize. In principle older people would prefer to stay in their own homes because of their emotional ties and memories and neighbourhood, however there are growing numbers who may consider moving if appropriate accommodation could be found.

Should older people choose to move, what is important to them is that they don’t lose their sense of community and feeling of worth which means there has to be a good intergenerational environment. The Vale of Glamorgan Council are well aware of these problems and this is reflected in two completed projects in Barry: Golau Caredig, a 42 apartment project that offers Extra Care facilities, Community areas, a Restaurant and a Coffee Shop, and the redevelopment of Barry Court into 52 units of Affordable Housing. Both good developments.

A thought. The ageing population is becoming larger, the difficulties that lie ahead for today’s families will not go away and perhaps now is the time for sons and daughters to talk to Mum and Dad and see what they might like to do when they get older and thus, be better prepared for the future. The Forum will continue to focus on Housing for Older People and Falls Prevention.

Falls prevention, what does that have to do with Housing?

Falls prevention, what does that have to with Housing? When we look at the statistics for falls prevention we find that 60% of falls in the over 65’s occur in the Home. So, in order to address this problem the Housing Group with guidance from the Health Group are working on this problem. (Suitable homes, Buildings and Home Maintenance etc.) There are a multitude of reasons older people fall but the main reasons are our homes tend to become cluttered and the fact that as we become more mature then we tend to lose muscle strength and lose flexibility in our joints. Just approximately an hour and a half to two hours a week of moderate exercise can improve this situation.

We in the Forum recognise this and are now presenting Exercise Classes, Low Impact Functional Training LIFT (a seated exercise programme) and Tai Chi for Health and Wellbeing at venues in Barry and Penarth. A more recent project is soon to start at the Sam Davies Ward at Barry Hospital will include a LIFT Exercise Programme, Falls Prevention talks and Dementia Training for Families and Carers.

There are prospects for Volunteers to train as Instructors.
Interested parties can contact me at julianloach.54@gmail.com or John Porter the Vale of Glamorgan Council’s Older People’s Strategy Co-ordinator: jporter@valeofglamorgan.gov.uk

Julian Loach, Chairman, Housing Group

Is your home hard to heat?

  

 The Welsh Government Warm Homes Nest scheme is here to help you keep warm and save money on your energy bills. Nest is open to all householders in Wales and provides advice on saving energy, money management, energy tariffs, and benefit entitlement.  

 In addition to free advice, if you own or privately rent your home and you or someone you live with receives a means tested benefit you may be eligible for home improvements at no cost. These may include a new central heating boiler, loft insulation, or cavity wall and solid wall insulation. 

 Head of Nest, Lee Parry, said: “Nest offers a wide range of support and advice to help people who are struggling to heat their homes. Between 2011 and 2016, over 85,000 householders have contacted Nest and 23,700 have received free home improvements and saved an average of £408 on their energy bills.”

If your home is hard to heat, please contact Nest on Freephone 0808 808 2244 for free advice and to see if you are eligible for energy saving home improvements, or visit www.nestwales.org.uk for more information.

Older Peoples Commissioner steps down

  

The Forum would like to extend their thanks to Sarah Rochira, the Older People’s Commissioner for Wales as she comes to the end of her six year term in office. Throughout her term in office Sarah has worked tirelessly to champion the rights of older people, their needs, aspirations and contribution to society.  This has helped to challenge ideas that older people are a burden to society and has helped develop a better understanding of the many positive ways in which older people contribute to society and the need to respect people of all ages.

Sarah’s campaign ‘I’m worth a billion’  has helped to raise awareness of the value of those of us who are a bit older but who still count within society, have a role to play and a voice to be heard.  The key message of the campaign is that the net worth of older people in Wales is £1 billion a year.  The Vale 50+ Strategy Forum have welcomed this positive campaign which makes a refreshing change to the all too frequent messages that appear in the media about the financial cost of older people in terms of pensions , health care and social services, and the particular issues around bed blocking. The reality is that pensioners make a positive contribution to our economy.  As a Forum we are grateful to Sarah for her contributions to this debate and her positive but challenging messages.

Another key achievement has been the Commissioner’s Ageing Well programme which has helped to embed the needs of older people in the development and planning of a range of services.  This includes public and community transport, public toilets and adult learning – services which are often a lifeline to older people.

Sarah has also shown a strong commitment to meeting with people and groups all over Wales ranging from senior managers in our public services to older people’s groups like the Forum.  We have appreciated the time and effort that Sarah has taken to get to know us, to understand the issues that concern us  and our hopes for the future.  Sarah was also instrumental in encouraging local authorities and their partners across Wales to sign the Dublin Declaration on Ageing which led to Wales being recognised by the World Health Organisation as an Age Friendly country and being granted a European four star status for Ageing.

Does South and West Wales and South Powys need a Major Trauma Network?

  

This was the question asked in a recent consultation document to which the Forum sent a response at the start of February. At present South Wales is the only part of Wales and the UK not to be covered by a Major Trauma Network . A Major Trauma Network comprises a major Trauma Centre and more local trauma centres based in Health Boards.  The present proposal is that The Major Trauma centre should be based at the University Hospital of Wales, local trauma centres would be based in the other Health Boards and the Trauma network would be administered from Morriston Hospital in Swansea. For more deatils see: Trauma Network 1

Kick Start Your Fitness

  

Walking Football is not only good fun, but it will enhance your overall fitness and wellbeing, providing the chance to keep fit and healthy as well as meet new people.

Press Release English

Press Release Welsh

People Don’t Have a ‘Best Before’ Date’ Campaign Communications Toolkit

  

Thank you so much for supporting the Welsh Government’s ‘People Don’t Have a ‘Best Before’ Date’ campaign.

The attached Communications Toolkit provides bilingual copy for you to use on your own channels including your website, newsletters and social media as well as to share with your networks. Our aim is to raise awareness with as many businesses across Wales and to direct people who would like more information to the Skills Gateway for Business website. Here they can find more information and download the ‘People Don’t Have a ‘Best Before’ Date’ employer toolkit which includes advice and guidance for businesses.

To accompany this document, please see below link to downloadable campaign and social media images, an email signature you can attach to all your outgoing emails and an infographic with facts and myth busting information.

People don’t have a Best Before Date – October Campaign Briefing Pecyn Cyfathrebu ‘Nid Oes Gan Unrhyw Un Ddyddiad ‘Ar ei Orau Cyn” – People Don’t Have a Best Before Date Campaign Communications toolkit.docx Dogfen Friffio Ymgyrch Hydref Nid Oes Gan Unrhyw Un Dyddiad ‘Ar ei Orau …

2017 – 2019 Development Plan

  

Click here to see the 2017 – 2019: Development plan