New Health and Wellbeing Hub Unveiled for Older Residents


Aine Tiernan with resident Barbara Andrews

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Cardiff Met’s School of Health Sciences has teamed up with Derwen Cymru to launch a health and wellbeing suite at one of Derwen’s sheltered housing complexes.

The ‘Keeping Well in Your Home’ project is a collaboration between the University and local older people's housing and service provider Derwen Cymru.

The scheme was hailed a 'fantastic focal point' by Dean of the School, Professor Adrian Peters, during a recent visit to unveil a new treatment and therapy room.

Statistics released by the Older Commissioner for Wales in her ‘Wellbeing indicators for Older People’ report stated that only 5% of those over 65 and 3% of those over 70 assess their health as being good.’

Derwen has come together with Cardiff Metropolitan University to ensure their residents have a head start with access to expert advice, increased social interaction and a wide range of treatments.

Launched early in the year, ‘Keeping Well in Your Home’ is based at Pantycelyn sheltered housing complex in Malpas, Newport and is enabling Derwen's residents to access free health related services across a range of disciplines from the School of Health Sciences including complementary health care, a pop up podiatry clinic, speech and language therapies and nutrition and public health and housing, while supporting a new generation of health and housing professionals.

The project is emphasising the learning that will take place, enhancing future professionals’ understanding of working inter-professionally and also focuses on the patients’ story.

Derwen and the University recently ran a hand massage taster session where 15 enthusiastic residents enjoyed a relaxing hand massage without having to make arrangements to leave their home. 

Tom Nicholls, 85, was one of the residents who took full advantage of the free service, praising it as ‘a fantastic opportunity for both the students and residents.’  He said:  “I was very impressed with my massage. It was extremely professional.”

Working together the two organisations have transformed the former warden’s flat into a peaceful, relaxing haven for the older residents. A competition was held to name the room, and 72-year-old resident Elaine Taylor was presented with flowers and chocolates for her winning suggestion of ‘The Health and Wellbeing Hub’.

Derwen is the only housing association in Wales dedicated to providing homes and services exclusively for older people.

Derwen Chairperson Pauline Card, said: “We are delighted to be working with Cardiff Metropolitan University on this fantastic learning partnership, bringing a range of free health and wellbeing benefits to Derwen residents, while enabling the students to gain invaluable experience on which to build a successful career.”

Cardiff Metropolitan University's Professor Adrian Peters, Dean of the School of Health Sciences said: “Cardiff Metropolitan University is delighted to be working in partnership with Derwen to deliver the Keeping Well in Your Home project.

“This project enables our students to work together, learn from each other and most importantly, learn from the residents while delivering services, therapies, and support across a large range of disciplines.

“The Health and Wellbeing suite is a fantastic focal point for the project and we look forward to building on this success with Derwen in the future."