Friday July 13 2018

Housing association scoops a prestigious award for tackling loneliness

A North Wales housing association has won a prestigious award last night, in a competition which was open to all social housing providers across Wales, for its pioneering work to tackle loneliness in

Housing association scoops a prestigious award for tackling loneliness

Grŵp Cynefin claimed first place in the community partnership category at the Tenant Participation Advisory Service (TPAS) Wales Cymru awards for its intergenerational programmes, which bring young and older people together.

The awards, established more than 20 years ago, focus on the role tenants play in creating social housing communities. 

Grŵp Cynefin’s work has been hailed a success after its residents reported feeling happier, more confident, and less lonely after taking part in the scheme.

Grŵp Cynefin’s first programme helped residents from Awel y Coleg and pupils from Ysgol Bro Tryweryn in Bala discover their musical talents with interactive sessions led by professional musicians.

Grŵp Cynefin then teamed up with Ysgol Pen Barras in Ruthin, with pupils visiting a local residence to read books, dance, and make arts and crafts alongside the elderly tenants.

Intergenerational work was also the theme at Grŵp Cynefin’s older people’s day in April 2018. Primary school children from Ysgol Dewi Sant and Ysgol Glan Morfa attended the event to take in part in folk dancing, singing, and arts and crafts.

Grŵp Cynefin also tasted success in the community action for children and young people category, as its Denbigh ‘Youth Shedz’ project came out runner up for its work with vulnerable young people.

Catherine Jones, a Grŵp Cynefin tenant of more than 25 years, was named runner up in the tenant of the year category, with Chloe Villis also in second place for young tenant of the year.

Mair Edwards, community initiatives manager at Grŵp Cynefin, said: “To win the community partnership award and be recognised in the other categories means so much for everyone involved.

“Our slogan is ‘more than housing’, because it’s important to us that our tenants live socially fulfilling lives.

“Studies have shown interaction with young people can reduce loneliness and depression in the elderly, and our tenants tell us how much they enjoy the interaction and how it gives them a chance to learn new skills from the children.

“The school’s teachers have also seen the children’s communication improving from being able to speak to people who they may not get a chance to interact with usually.”

Shan L Williams, Chief Executive of Grŵp Cynefin, said: We welcome this recognition of our work, on supporting and driving forward tenant participation across the work of the organisation.  By doing so, there are plenty of opportunities through a wide range of activities for tenants to increase confidence, skills and enable them to contribute to our work.

Our Annual General Meeting on July 18th, 2018 will showcase the type of work delivered by our Community Initiatives Team in partnership with Dr Catrin Hedd Jones, Psychologist and Lecturer from Bangor University.”

Grŵp Cynefin provides more than 4,800 rented homes and affordable properties to people across North Wales and north Powys.

For more information, visit www.grwpcynefin.org, or call 0300 111 2122.

"Our slogan is more than housing, because its important to us that our tenants live socially fulfilling lives."
Mair Edwards

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