by Shereen Devine

Last month, I told you about bus ride to promote a coffee morning. Well the morning was successful; some people in attendance had been encouraged to attend by the bus driver. I think the bus is going to be a great way to connect with people. 

We talked about what is and what is not working well for the community. We made a couple of plans for the next few weeks; we even managed to get a couple of new members for the Friends of Holway group.

During the meeting, a lady mentioned needing her kitchen painting, she had the paint and the brushes but did not know anyone who could help. A community member attending the event has now painted her kitchen – in return for a cup of tea and a biscuit. A bit of informal volunteering between neighbours is fantastic; acts of kindness make such a difference to humanity.

I am delighted to tell you that the Ysgol Dwerenfa in Leeswood is now a Dementia-Friendly School. We have worked with staff, and pupils to become Dementia Friends.

With a donation from the cafe and additional funding sourced through the steering group, we able to fund a drama practitioner to work with the school to deliver a performance about memory. We also supported the school to invite older people from the community to the performance, and the school made biscuits in the shape of a forget me not flower.

I have been back to the school with Kath from the allotment group to plant pumpkins; we intend to make soup again as we did last year.  I am looking after the pumpkins for the summer. A big responsibility , I am growing a few extra just in case.

I attended a Dementia Friendly Community Conference organised by Luke from NEWCIS. Helen and I had a joint stand to promote Rural Wisdom and Age-Friendly Communities. Luke brought along a specially designed Dementia Virtual Reality device; it was a very disorienting experience; however, I would encourage you to have a try.

I also pushed myself out of my comfort zone, when the Welsh Audit Office asked me to deliver a presentation about Volunteering Matters as a whole and an opportunity to talk about Rural Wisdom.  Some people at the event had also heard of Outside the Box; it was good hear that our Scottish friends are known in Wales.