Other Policy Drivers
We provide practical support to those most in need, we work with Torfaen County Borough Council in mitigating welfare reform, the scheme identifies those residents living in crisis and or extreme poverty across Torfaen. Individuals receive support in the form of emergency food, fuel or household furniture needs as well as signposting to further support to help prevent a crisis in the future. Garnsychan Partnership hosts the Citizens Advice Bureau on a weekly basis to facilitate drop-in surgeries supporting people with a range of issues including housing, debt management advice, welfare support and legal support. We also work with local foodbanks to issue out vouchers and support the cause by donations of food produce.
THE WIDER IMPACT
Driving forward a ‘Clean and Green Torfaen
We have established working relationships with local housing associations and community groups to tackle the litter problems that we face within our communities. For example, we are in the process of organising several community litter events working with local scout’s groups in the North of the borough, we will establish two teams dedicated to clearing and collecting the litter, then we will sort through the litter that is collected and recycle all recyclable materials through our recycling services at the Garnsychan base in Blaenavon.
Garnsychan also operate ‘Give It Away, Take It Away’ events which encourages residents to donate unwanted but reusable goods and take away useful second-hand items for free. We are in the planning stages to run a programme of four events throughout the next year at a variety of community venues, to ensure that everyone in our community can donate goods and pick up needed items for free, providing the double service of promoting re-use and recycling while also alleviating poverty.
In addition, we run monthly Recycling Road Shows and educational events at community venues throughout the county of Torfaen, this allow us to take the Garnsychan project out into the community, expanding our reach and taking our service to the people. This programme takes Garnsychan to community venues so that local people can access affordable recycled goods and learn about the environmental benefits of re-use and recycling. The programme of road shows has a positive environmental impact by promoting recycling and diverting usable items from landfill, while providing our disadvantaged community with the opportunity to purchase low cost goods and services. Additionally, the programme provided the opportunity for volunteer involvement, supporting residents to gain skills and experience and improving their confidence and community engagement.
Schools: Garnsychan is aware it needs to serve as an example to the whole community about the benefits of recycling! We work with a small number of local schools with great success. Workshops, hands on events and recycling competitions have allowed us to engage with young people and teach them that recycling is worth it as well as worthy! The children then act as enthusiastic ambassadors for the recycling message, passing the importance of recycling onto their parents. We like to see this as an exercise in positive ‘pester power!’ There are still many schools and youth groups who we are trying to work with in the future helping our young people recognise that recycling will safeguard their future.
Clearances: Garnsychan have been successful in gaining contracts to clear closed schools within Torfaen. Combustibles, wood, furniture and metal items were collected and all of which are repaired, cleaned and put back into reuse some of which have supported third world countries with surplus educational resources.
We also very active in carry out home clearance for the locally people, at a low affordable rate, last year we carried out over 50 home clearances in Torfaen.