Patients in Rhondda are being offered more opportunities nearer home to access specialist advice on looking after their wellbeing as well as their health.
Community coordinator Lucy Foster was appointed last year to link patients to the many local services which can change lives for the better.
The post is funded by the Rhondda Primary Care cluster and the service is available to patients aged over 18 throughout the Rhondda.
Lucy holds sessions in GP surgeries and patients can make appointments themselves.
The new initiative is linked to the Trerhondda wellbeing project and its activities coordinator Beverly Llewelyn.
The service signposts patients to help with issues from housing, benefits or finance, to education and learning, employment, training and volunteering.
It also offers information about mental health issues, healthy and active lifestyle, the arts, music and creativity, befriending, counselling or other support groups.
The scheme aims to:
- Reduce loneliness and isolation
- Sign post to relevant local activities and services
- Provide a ‘safe place’ to have a cuppa and a chat
Lucy said: “We will be providing the patients and community members of Maerdy and Ferndale a ‘one-stop shop’ for all their wellbeing needs.
“We will have a small seating/waiting area where you can wait to be seen and have a coffee from our community café stall.
“This clinic is dementia friendly and the Dementia Friends volunteers will be on hand to provide support and information.”
The first drop-in clinic was held on March 16 and the feedback from those attending has been positive.
One said: “You hear of so many places offering activities, support and information but it’s all a minefield to me. Coming to one place for a cup of tea and be directed by a friendly face is much easier.”
Others added: “This wellbeing clinic in the hub of our community will be great. It’s well needed.”
“If I need help or advice I know where to come.”
Lucy Foster – Rhondda cluster community wellbeing coordinator