An award-winning charity is putting more smiles on the faces of hundreds of older people as its plans to extend across West Wales are coming to fruition. Goldies Cymru, fondly known simply as ‘Goldies’, started in and around Cardiff and the South Wales Valleys over six years ago, with a small number of daytime singing and activity sessions for older people to attend.
It has grown to the point where there are now over 50 sessions taken by 12 sessions leaders taking place at Church halls, community rooms and libraries. Sessions include members of the Cardiff Institute for the Blind and members of the Coal Industry Social Welfare Organisation and Sheltered Housing Schemes.
There are a number of sessions for Adults with Learning Difficulties and for people living with dementia. At the heart of each session are the pop favourites and memory-evoking songs of the 50s and 60s. A song book of Welsh folk songs is very popular with everyone who attends.
Supported by a 3 year People and Places, Big Lottery Fund in Wales grant the first new session to open was on Wednesday, March 8 at Evergreen Hall, Bridgend. A taster was met with a wonderful reception and is now successfully running each month, this was closely followed on March 18 in partnership with Port Talbot Age Cymru and has been enjoyed by many since.
The charity met with the team at Morriston Library in March and a new session will soon commence. Gwaun Cae Gurwen also had their first taster session on May 30 with a regular monthly session planned at the Community Library with fantastic local support.
Further meetings in May have secured the first session in Gorseinon from June as well as Maesteg, Clydach and Pontarddulais.
For further information on all sessions, see www.goldiescymru.org.uk.
The Goldies Cymru sessions are led by dedicated freelance session leaders and, with the support the Big Lottery Fund in Wales, a further 50 sessions will be added across Mid and West Wales in the next three years.
Sir Cliff Richard OBE is Patron of the Charity, he said;
“In a very short time our ‘Goldies’ charity has really made quite remarkable progress.”
The Charity works with many organisations and community groups in the delivery of its sessions. The most recent addition being at Evergreen Hall, Angel Street in Bridgend, the session is taken by Rachel Marsh on the last Wednesday of each month from 10.30am to 11.30am. Everyone is welcome.
As Goldies Cymru spreads across Mid and West Wales it is keen to hear from all local age support groups, Churches and other organisations who would like to know more about hosting a Goldies session for older people in their community.
The Charity is always looking for enthusiastic new session leaders and the Goldies Cymru contact is Rachel Parry on 07796 714816.