The Little Lounge was started in 2015 by a group of friends who all had babies and recognised that Cilfynydd needed more meeting places for new parents, it is an isolated community that can leave many families feeling cut off, lonely and isolated.
The lounge volunteers have been working with Interlink to develop a dedicated café and play space at the Cilfynydd Community Centre as an asset transfer under RCT Together.
Over the last few months Little Lounge has been working really hard to still keep a sense of ‘togetherness’ whilst being physically apart during Covid 19!
“We sent out ‘Care packs’ at the start of the lockdown to all our families who had attended our Baby Group in the last 6 weeks before lockdown; we sent 43 Care packs out! It cost a fortune in Postage! But we just thought it was a really important use of funds – to give a tangible reminder that parents are not alone at this time”, said Kate Hadley of the Little Lounge.
The care packs included activity ideas and resources and also a scented candle for the parent, and a wooden plaque saying “You got this, Mama” (Or Dad depending on who attended the group!)
“In the care packs we said we’d be doing Facebook live every Thursday morning, to keep a similar routine to our usual Thursday group session. We always sing Hello to all the Babies during our circle time, so we kept that going with the parents ‘Commenting’ the Babies names if they want them sung to during the ‘Live’!”
Expanding the reach of Little Lounge, Katie Hadley (Coordinator) has been a part of coordinating the local Covid 19 Volunteer Team in Cilfynydd and helping with strategy across the communities of Pontypridd.
“It’s been good to work alongside the RCT staff at the local Resilience Hub and have a sense of cohesion between formal support and volunteer support.
Here in Cilfynydd we put together Volunteer packs for the Covid 19 Volunteers which included a T-shirt, hand sanitiser and info leaflets for vulnerability residents”.
The group were in a privileged position with access to the Community Centre (Where Little Lounge is based) to call on the local community to donate towards Care Packs for the elderly the week before we went into Lockdown. This enabled the group to get a head start here in Cilfynydd to identity and contact 28 elderly residents in the village and along with the Care Packs, give them some written information about Coronavirus, health guidance and our contact details should they need support.
“Our Covid19 volunteers have been amazing, juggling working from home, kids and doing shopping or errands for vulnerable residents! Also our Volunteer Admin Team here in Cilfynydd have been first class, professional, dedicated, taking initiative! I feel really proud to be part of such an effective team, considering we jumped into action at such short notice and with no previous experience of working together!”
“It just shows how vital ‘Community’ is during a time like this! We all have a role to play, whether we can leave the house or not, we can all stay connected and help one another through this difficult time”.
On Day 2 of Volunteers Week Katie would like to say a huge thank you to all the volunteers who have help to support the community of Cilfynydd and all the communities who have been supported through the tireless work of all the Pontypridd Covid 19 Groups. She’d also like to say a special thanks you to Margaret Morgan who “…even though self-isolating is running the Cilfynydd Covid19 Volunteer Team like a boss from behind closed doors! Proof that everyone can do something to make a difference!” Kate Hadley
Listen out for Katie on our volunteers week Taf Ely partner GTFM this morning at 11.15am!