Friday 16 August 2013

Teifi Valley Lunch Club

Age Cymru is organising a fundraising cheese and wine event on 3 September beginning at 5pm at the Teifi Valley Day Centre next to Maes Llewelyn. Tickets cost £10 and can be purchased by phoning 01239 615777 or 01239 710166.
The aim of the event is to launch a new group called Grŵp Gweithgaredd Cymunedol Dyffryn Teifi (Teifi Valley Community Action Group) which will seek to breathe new life into the centre.
Age Cymru took over the running of the lunch club in 2012 from Carmarthenshire County Council which unceremoniously dumped several other clubs at the same time. Subsequently the council's propaganda machine went to work to hail the dawn of a new era. The clubs under their new management were a roaring success, we were told.
The truth, of course, was rather different. The charities running them are dependent on unpaid volunteers and grants. In the case of the Teifi Valley centre the service has gone from three to two days a week, and the numbers attending have fallen.
The reality is one of sad decline rather than success as the County Council would have it.
The club in Newcastle Emlyn now meets on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and for the frail and elderly people who attend, it is a lifeline. 

Anyone who lives in a rural area such as this will be aware of elderly people living often very isolated lives and struggling to cope.

The club needs more volunteers and help to make the day centre a more attractive and vibrant place because without it, as the council knows, the result will be more people having to go into residential care.

Please make an effort to go along because one day most of us will be glad to have a service like this.


Anonymous said...

Oh gosh, what do readers make of this?

Anonymous said...

Social services should be the prime focus of local authorities; instead they are treated as something of an embarrassment, attracting none of the PR glory of Mr James's pet projects. So fobbing day care centres off onto "the third sector" at a time when their funding is being slashed as well is something that County Hall can only rub their hands with glee at. And if they go to the wall, I don't think we can expect any rescue bids from the Council.

Not sure what to make of the previous poster's link. What's the point being made here - that substantial funding used to come from the public purse, or that the CEO is paid too much?

Anonymous said...

@ anon 18:14 - I wholeheartedly agree with you that "Social Services should be the prime focus of local authorities."

In respect of the link I posted, I am just interested to learn what other readers make of the Age Cymru takeover. For example, you have raised an interesting thought (fobbing day care centres off onto "the third sector" ...) and posed some good questions.

Firstly, given "the council's propaganda machine went to work to hail the dawn of a new era..." was this lunch club "fobbed off onto" Age Cymru or is there more to this than meets the eye? "As Scope Chief Executive Richard Hawkes has said however, these savage cuts provide big opportunities for charities."

Which leads me onto the question of funding from the public purse and fat cats. Sadly whilst a number of small charities have gone "to the wall," Big charities have "received more than £1.1 billion over the past three years from the Government, the United Nations and the EU."

"At Age UK, the leading ageing charity of which Age International is a subsidiary, 11 earn six-figures and two earn between £180,000 and £190,000 ..."