12530 Natter that Matters

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Rhymney Pontlottyn Fochriw Abertysswg<br />

Tirphill New Tredegar Deri Brithdir<br />

Markham Bargoed Aberbargoed<br />

Argoed Gilfach Oakdale Crumlin<br />

Tir-y-Berth Pengam Cefn Fforest<br />

Blackwood Penmaen Newbridge<br />

Nelson Gelligaer Penybryn Hengoed<br />

Cefn Hengoed Wylie Maesycwmmer<br />

Ystrad Mynach Pontllanfraith Abercarn<br />

Llanbradach Senghenydd Ynysddu<br />

Cwmfelinfach Wattsville Crosskeys<br />

Abertridwr Bedwas Trethomas Machen<br />

Risca Waterloo<br />

Caerphilly<br />

Rudry<br />

Machen<br />

<strong>Natter</strong> <strong>that</strong><br />

<strong>Matters</strong><br />

Autumn<br />

2015<br />

Rhymney Bargoed<br />

Ystrad Mynach Gelligaer<br />

Rhymney<br />

Tirphill<br />

Brithdir<br />

Newbridge<br />

Rhymney<br />

Aberbargoed<br />

Tirphill<br />

Crumlin<br />

Deri<br />

Cefn Fforest<br />

Bargoed<br />

Hengoed<br />

Gilfach<br />

Abercarn<br />

Tir-y-Berth<br />

Bedwas<br />

Blackwood<br />

Waterloo<br />

Nelson<br />

Rhymney Pontlottyn Fochriw Abertysswg Tirphill New Tredegar Deri Brithdir Markham<br />

Bargoed Aberbargoed Argoed Gilfach Oakdale Crumlin Tir-y-Berth Pengam Cefn Fforest<br />

Blackwood Penmaen Newbridge Gelligaer Penybryn Cefn Hengoed Hengoed Argoed<br />

Pontllanfraith Ystrad Mynach Maesycwmmer Abercarn Senghenydd Llanbradach Machen<br />

Cwmfelinfach Wattsville Fochriw Crosskeys Abertridwr Bedwas Trethomas Ynysddu Risca<br />

Waterloo Rudry Rhymney Pontlottyn Fochriw Abertysswg New Tredegar Tirphill Deri<br />

Brithdir Caerphilly Machen Bargoed Blackwood Nelson Gilfach Oakdale Crosskeys Crumlin<br />

Tir-y-Berth Pengam Cefn Fforest Blackwood Penmaen Newbridge Nelson Gelligaer<br />

Hengoed Penybryn Cefn Hengoed Wylie Pontllanfraith Ystrad Mynach Maesycwmmer<br />

Abercarn Senghenydd Llanbradach Ynysddu Cwmfelinfach Wattsville Crosskeys Bedwas<br />

Abertridwr Trethomas Machen Risca Waterloo Caerphilly Rudry Rhymney Pontlottyn<br />

Fochriw Abertysswg Tirphill New Tredegar Deri Brithdir Argoed Markham Bargoed<br />

Aberbargoed Gilfach Oakdale Crumlin Tir-y-Berth Pengam Cefn Fforest Blackwood<br />

Penmaen Newbridge Nelson Gelligaer Penybryn Cefn Hengoed Hengoed Pontllanfraith<br />

Wylie Ystrad Mynach Maesycwmmer Abercarn Senghenydd Llanbradach Ynysddu Wattsville<br />

Cwmfelinfach Crosskeys Abertridwr Bedwas Trethomas Machen Waterloo Caerphilly Rudry<br />

Caerphilly Bargoed Rhymney Ystrad Mynach Blackwood Risca New Tredegar Newbridge<br />

www.caerphillyover50.co.uk/ Caerphilly Over 50<br />


The 1st October is the<br />

10th Anniversary of Caerphilly<br />

Borough 50+ Forum.<br />

We will be celebrating this milestone by hosting a<br />

live entertainment event at Lewis School, Pengam.<br />

We are pleased <strong>that</strong> we have been able to launch<br />

our NEW NEWSLETTER to coincide with this event.<br />

This ‘Share a Smile’ event will also be our contribution<br />

to celebrating Older Persons Day.<br />

A note from our Chairman<br />

The last few months have seen significant<br />

strides forward in revitalising Caerphilly County<br />

Borough 50+ Forum. Our first priority has been<br />

to broaden the scope of our contact with<br />

residents of the Borough and recognising<br />

<strong>that</strong> we had to be relevant to the whole age<br />

range. To achieve this we have developed a<br />

new website www.CaerphillyOver50.co.uk<br />

which seeks to provide relevant information<br />

and news as well as providing an easy means of<br />

contacting us. Closely allied to the website is our<br />

Facebook page. The latter provides almost<br />

daily interest and allows us to point you to our<br />

website when key new items are available.<br />

This newsletter is a reflection of our recognition<br />

<strong>that</strong> not all our members have access to the<br />

internet. We will also continue to maintain contact<br />

with members through mail. We have now<br />

started the next phase of our development<br />

by hosting events. These will be varied in<br />

nature from purely entertainment, providing<br />

information and also workshops where you<br />

will have a chance to respond to consultations,<br />

for example, providing feedback on Council<br />

proposals for budget constraints.<br />

For those of you who receive this newsletter<br />

who are not currently members of the Caerphilly<br />

County Borough 50+ forum I would like to<br />

take this opportunity to encourage you to<br />

join us. It is FREE and you can complete the<br />

registration form via our website or you can<br />

call 01443 864277 for more information.<br />

The more people who join the more we are<br />

able to support and, importantly, the greater<br />

the impact of our voice when we choose to<br />

speak out on issues <strong>that</strong> matter to those who<br />

are Caerphilly Over 50!<br />

Welsh National Transport Plan<br />

The Minister for Transport, in the Welsh<br />

Assembly Government, has announced<br />

the transport policy for our area for the<br />

medium term up to 2023.<br />

A new level of administration will be the wholly<br />

government owned Welsh Government Transport<br />

Company which will administer the Cardiff Metro<br />

and be “taking the revenue fare risk.” This means<br />

<strong>that</strong> the actual companies providing the services<br />

will do so for a fixed profit margin. The cost of this<br />

plan is estimated at £600,000,000 & “good progress<br />

is being made in identifying funding sources”<br />

beyond the £125,000,000 already set aside. She also<br />

said the Metro “will not only act as a link between<br />

our communities, but also support the Welsh<br />

economy by enhancing connectivity across<br />

Wales and into the rest of the UK and Europe.”<br />

2<br />

<strong>Natter</strong> <strong>that</strong> <strong>Matters</strong> Autumn 2015

Battlefields Visit<br />

The over 50’s group at Lewis School<br />

Pengam has gone from strength to<br />

strength over the eight years of its<br />

existence, the sequence dancing with<br />

Brian and Eileen Swithens still takes place<br />

the first Wednesday of every month and<br />

the weekly lunches are still in full swing<br />

every Wednesday at 12pm in term time.<br />

We have regular guests and events such<br />

as the “Golden Oldies” singalong and<br />

organised trips such as our journey to<br />

Flanders & the Somme described below.<br />

The intergenerational visit to the Battlefields<br />

was an unforgettable trip for many reasons.<br />

To experience watching our whole school<br />

community, with ages ranging from 12 - 80,<br />

walking, talking, laughing, eating and learning<br />

together was everything we could have hoped<br />

for. Two of our intergen group, sisters in law<br />

Sandra Stevens and Cynthia Powell seemed to<br />

sum up the whole experience in the interviews<br />

they gave for our two filmmakers. Sandra talked<br />

about how seeing so many graves and so many<br />

cemeteries brought home the enormity of the<br />

damage the War had done, she said “ All my life<br />

I’ve seen pictures or programmes on TV about<br />

this but this visit has brought it home to me far<br />

more than anything else could have done.”<br />

Cynthia agreed with this sentiment and added,<br />

“These trips are still important. We are showing<br />

our boys <strong>that</strong> they will never be forgotten.”<br />

We laughed, joked and enjoyed each other’s<br />

company but we also remembered why we<br />

were there; to show respect and admiration<br />

for those who made the final sacrifice for us.<br />

2016 is the 100yr anniversary of the Battle<br />

of the Somme. We intend revisiting Mametz<br />

Wood and the other sites where so many of<br />

our young men fought.<br />

www.caerphillyover50.co.uk/ Caerphilly Over 50<br />


Website & Digital training sessions<br />

On 28th April 2015 we launched the new<br />

Caerphilly Over 50 website at an open meeting<br />

in Bargoed Library with the all important tea,<br />

coffee and cakes provided by the Forum. Iwan<br />

Williams the Communities, Local Government<br />

and Wellbeing officer from the office of the<br />

Older People’s Commissioner Wales gave a<br />

presentation, as well as our Chair, Ralph Stevens.<br />

These were followed by digital training sessions<br />

from the CCBC Communities First/ Get Caerphilly<br />

Online team. There were 3 topics covering Facebook<br />

and Twitter, keeping safe online and getting<br />

more out of your tablet/iPad and there were<br />

about 10 people in each ‘lively’ group. We also<br />

had 2 visitors from the Carmarthenshire Over 50<br />

Forum who joined in the Facebook and Twitter<br />

session, which they found very informative.<br />

As a result of <strong>that</strong> successful day we organised<br />

a similar digital event in Risca Library on<br />

1st September 2015, once again supported<br />

by Get Caerphilly Online team. Everyone has<br />

been very enthusiastic and complementary<br />

about the events and a number of people<br />

have gone on to attend the free Digital<br />

Fridays sessions in their local libraries.<br />

For details of Digital Fridays session close to<br />

where you live you can either look at the<br />

www.getcaerphillyonline.org.uk<br />

or pop into your local library and ask for<br />

information. We may hold more digital<br />

events in the future; keep checking our<br />

www.CaerphillyOver50.co.uk<br />

website for details.<br />

We can help you make a Digital story!<br />

What is a Digital Story?<br />

They can be a simple memory of a loved<br />

family member or they could be a powerful<br />

lobbying tool. Their strength is their simplicity<br />

- around 3 or 4 minutes long, your story<br />

will contain your words and your voice,<br />

accompanied by your choice of pictures to<br />

enhance what you are saying.<br />

Caerphilly County Borough 50+ Forum has<br />

produced many digital stories over the last<br />

10 years <strong>that</strong> have been used to lobby on<br />

behalf of older people - one has even been<br />

shown to the House of Lords!<br />

If there is an issue <strong>that</strong> you feel strongly about or<br />

a point you feel needs making, we can produce<br />

a story with you. You bring your story, we bring<br />

the technical skills and we can end up with<br />

something <strong>that</strong> can change things for the better.<br />

Contact Mandy Sprague on 01443 864277 to discuss your idea for your story.<br />

You can view examples of our stories on our website on the digital story telling section<br />

http://caerphillyover50.co.uk/digital-story-telling/<br />

4<br />

<strong>Natter</strong> <strong>that</strong> <strong>Matters</strong> Autumn 2015

Community Connectors<br />

There is a new service available in<br />

Caerphilly Council <strong>that</strong> is available<br />

to any adult living in the Borough<br />

called Community Connectors.<br />

The ethos of the Community Connector service<br />

is to keep as many people as independent as<br />

possible for as long as possible in their own<br />

homes. Studies have shown <strong>that</strong> by achieving<br />

this, people’s health and wellbeing will be<br />

better for longer and people generally will<br />

feel better about their own lives.<br />

Many people living in Caerphilly are finding<br />

themselves becoming socially isolated and<br />

lonely for a variety of reasons such as following<br />

a stay in hospital, retirement, moving into<br />

the area or a bereavement. Sometimes<br />

people just don’t know where or who to<br />

turn to for some information and advice.<br />

Community Connectors will visit people in<br />

their own homes and take the time to really<br />

find out what is important to them. They can<br />

then offer a wide range of information and<br />

advice to help people achieve their personal<br />

goals. It could be providing a list of services<br />

available to help them; it might involve<br />

accompanying someone to a local group of<br />

interest; it could even be some IT assistance<br />

to help people stay in touch with loved ones<br />

who live away.<br />

Community Connectors have already made<br />

such a difference to many people’s lives.<br />

They have connected people via Facebook<br />

and Skype to family who live abroad and<br />

have introduced many people to local<br />

groups and activities. New friendships have<br />

been made, and more and more people have<br />

now started to feel part of their communities.<br />

If you think you, or someone you know,<br />

could benefit from chatting to a Community<br />

Connector please give us a call on<br />

0808 100 2500.<br />

www.caerphillyover50.co.uk/ Caerphilly Over 50<br />


Creating Dementia<br />

Friendly Communities<br />

■ 75% of people in the UK don’t<br />

think society is geared up to deal<br />

with people with dementia.<br />

■ 67% of people with dementia do not<br />

always feel a part of the community.<br />

■ 61% of people with dementia feel<br />

lonely always or some of the time.<br />

■ 44% of people with dementia feel they<br />

lost friends after being diagnosed. *<br />

This is why ‘Dementia Friends’ has been<br />

created. To become a Dementia Friend<br />

takes just 1 hour of your time to attending<br />

an interactive and engaging information<br />

session about dementia delivered by a<br />

Dementia Friends Champion, where you<br />

will discover the 5 things everyone should<br />

know about dementia, enabling you to<br />

help make Caerphilly a more dementia<br />

friendly community.<br />

John Green, a local resident and 50+ forum<br />

member, recently delivered this training to<br />

our steering group, CCBC Older people’s<br />

Champions, and some CCBC staff. We found<br />

the training really interesting and we thought<br />

we would share John’s details with you in<br />

case you might want to ask him to deliver a<br />

session for yourself and a group of friends,<br />

or for any group you belong to.<br />

You can email John at:<br />

newhorizens@btinternet.com<br />

or call 01443 864277<br />

for more information.<br />

* from the Dementia 2012 report<br />

6<br />

<strong>Natter</strong> <strong>that</strong> <strong>Matters</strong> Autumn 2015

What makes your blood boil!?<br />

This section is for you to get your voice heard on issues <strong>that</strong> matter to you!<br />

“I think at some time or another<br />

we have all fallen foul of the<br />

packet <strong>that</strong> can’t be opened.<br />

I know I have many times been<br />

frustrated not being able to<br />

break into the most innocuous<br />

looking packet and have been<br />

forced to take drastic measures.”<br />

Chris Fiore<br />

1) The Tablet and<br />

Bleach Bottles<br />

We know <strong>that</strong> these<br />

containers are<br />

designed for safety<br />

reasons, but if you<br />

can’t get inside the<br />

product because<br />

your hands are not<br />

what they used to<br />

be, or you have<br />

poor eye sight, or<br />

you are just frail,<br />

what are you<br />

supposed to do?<br />

2) The Packet<br />

Plastic moulded packaging seems<br />

to come out worst as the most<br />

dangerous packaging. If you have<br />

ever come across this packaging, it is<br />

encased in this plastic bubble and needs<br />

some drastic measures to open it.<br />

3) Vacuum Sealed Foods.<br />

Again we know <strong>that</strong> the food is packaged<br />

so <strong>that</strong> it will arrive to us nice and fresh,<br />

but again if you are unable to remove the<br />

product from its packaging through ill<br />

health, or bad eye sight, or just being frail,<br />

what are you suppose to do?<br />

We are living in the most technically<br />

advanced age <strong>that</strong> man has ever known;<br />

surely a little more thought could be<br />

put into this problem by the various<br />

manufacturers? A survey by Which?<br />

magazine says, <strong>that</strong> four in every ten<br />

people are hurt in removing items from<br />

packaging. Things used in the opening of<br />

the packaging include, Razor blades, kitchen<br />

knives, Scissors, and Stanley knives. 2% of<br />

people end up needing medical help.<br />

If you agree with Chris let us know via the website<br />

http://caerphillyover50.co.uk/ get-in-touch/<br />

or give us a call on 01443 864277 and if<br />

there is enough interest we will consider<br />

developing a campaign to address the issue.<br />

www.caerphillyover50.co.uk/ Caerphilly Over 50<br />


Knit and <strong>Natter</strong><br />

Knitters nationwide meet in libraries, craft shops, cafes and front<br />

rooms. Some knit for their own pleasure but many, like the one<br />

in Machen Library, knit for charity. We supply Velindre hospital<br />

with items for their shop and we also sell knitted items at local<br />

Farmers’ Markets, sending the money raised to the hospital.<br />

At the beginning of each year we start knitting the chicks<br />

which have crème eggs in them ready for Easter.<br />

Mainly yellow chicks but some in team colours and the<br />

odd punk or goth chick. This year we introduced a limited<br />

edition of Minions chicks! By Easter Monday if we never see<br />

another clucking chick it will be too soon, but we are very<br />

happy to send £200 plus to the hospital.<br />

What makes your<br />

blood boil!?<br />

Just like Joy, one of our forum members<br />

did. She felt strongly about the change in<br />

process reapplying for renewals of Disability<br />

Parking badges.<br />

We acted on her comments and now the<br />

Commissioner for Older People is discussing<br />

the issue with the Welsh Government and<br />

we now have a Top Tips video clip on our<br />

website Transport<br />

& Mobility pages<br />

which you can watch<br />

or share with friends<br />

via this link below.<br />

http://caerphillyover50.co.uk/<br />

transport-mobility/<br />

We would like to thank Caerphilly 50+<br />

Positive Action for their help and support<br />

in producing this first newsletter and the<br />

Welsh Government who have funded the<br />

cost of the printing as part of their<br />

engagement work supporting<br />

Strategy for Older People in Wales.<br />

If you would like to advertise to<br />

thousands of over 50s in Caerphilly<br />

County Borough you can do so by<br />

sponsoring the next edition of this<br />

Newsletter or any of the forums events.<br />

Please contact us via the website<br />

‘get in touch’ section or email:<br />

spragm@caerphilly.gov.uk or call<br />

Mandy Sprague on 01443 864277<br />

8<br />

<strong>Natter</strong> <strong>that</strong> <strong>Matters</strong> Autumn 2015

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