Life for girls and young women can be challenging. Whether it be academic pressure, a difficult family situation or the influence of social media, there are many different reasons why, as a young woman, you could start to feel your mental health suffer.
However, for teenage girls and young women, there are lots of dedicated mental heath support services and resources, ready and waiting to offer their assistance right here in Taff Ely.
Kooth is a free mental wellbeing support service, which is freely accessible to young people in Taff Ely. This online platform has lots of different support available, including:
Get started with Kooth, here: https://www.kooth.com/
Valleys Steps to Student Wellbeing
Valleys Steps provides mindfulness and wellbeing courses and workshops to the young people of Rhondda Cynon Taf, Merthyr Tydfil and Bridgend. There are always new workshops specially designed for school and college students – whether that be online or in person – so you can access useful mental wellbeing guidance you need.
There are also quick guides and online tools covering topics like staying calm, sleep journals and dealing with change.
Take a look at the latest workshops and tools, here: https://valleyssteps.org/students/
Eye to Eye Wales
Free counselling and confidential support for anyone aged between 7 and 30 years old across RCT. As well as a huge number of online resources and advice, you can get in touch with a counsellor in 3 different ways:
Take a look at the amazing support available from Eye to Eye, here: https://www.eyetoeye.wales/talk-to-us
Parent and Family Support
Rhondda Cynon Taf County Council have a hub of useful links for parents and families who may be struggling, no matter the reason. From financial support to parent and toddler groups, the council are able to offer help to parents with their own mental health issues, as well as children and young people in need of support.
Click here to learn more: https://www.rctcbc.gov.uk/EN/Resident/ChildrenandFamilies/ParentandFamilySupport/ParentandFamilySupport.aspx
The best thing to do when you can feel your mental wellbeing declining is to reach out for support. Whether that be to friends, family and loved ones, or mental health support services, anything is better than bottling up what you are going through.
For men living in Taff Ely and the surrounding areas, there are lots of local and national organisations who offer resources, support, helplines, and workshops which can help you take back control of your health and mental wellbeing.
Men’s Sheds Cymru
Inclusive and independently run social clubs, run by the men who attend them. Men’s Sheds offers a sense of belonging, acceptance and fellowship for groups of men with common interests.
A freephone helpline (0800 132 737) offering confidential listening, advice and support for those who need it in Wales. You can also text ‘help’ to 81066 for support through text messaging.
Rhondda Cynon Taf Parent and Family Support
A hub of resources from Rhondda Cynon Taf council for parents and families in need of support. Their services include financial advice, parent and toddler groups and holiday play schemes – to help lift the pressures on a parent’s shoulders.
Free wellbeing courses and workshops to promote better mental health across the Valleys communities. They also deliver workplace wellbeing courses and offer resources for improving mindfulness techniques.
Cwm Taf Morgannwg Mind
Cwm Taf’s local branch of the Mind charity, proving mental health support, training and resources for your community. You can refer yourself to the Mental Health Support Hub and find details of crisis services on their site.
Mental health services for adults over the age of 18 in RCT, Merthyr and Bridgend. Any adult can self-refer and contact New Horizons directly. They run local support groups on a weekly basis, including a virtual men’s group on Wednesday evenings.
Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board are proud to announce the opening of the brand-new Wellness Improvement Service (WISE).
Available as part of the NHS Wales Planned Care Programme for Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board, this new service provides non-medical intervention to improve patient health and wellbeing for those on waitlists for specific clinics.
This is an ongoing educational programme, a new service that will help patients understand the root cause of certain medical conditions. The scheme will also improve wellbeing and quality of life through proven methods to advance long term health and reduce symptoms. These methods include making lifestyle and thought pattern changes which help patients learn to live comfortably with long term conditions.
The WISE Team will initially be able to support patients with the following conditions:
This service will be delivered through highly trained wellness coaches, who will lead patients through a structured programme in the form of group sessions. Patients will focus on areas including proper nutrition, physical movement, and sleep improvement, as well as how to reduce stress and manage the symptoms affecting their quality of life.
There are digital health tools on hand to assist with the journey in the form of a new self-management website with resources on holistic medicine and wellness. The website also provides links to other websites which offer downloadable health resources, digital libraries, and relevant blog articles.
Patients can be referred by their consultant, GP practice, health professionals, self-referral, or social connector. If you are interested in this programme, you can get started by registering here: https://ctmuhb.nhs.wales/wise-ctm/wise-registration-form/
This new scheme from Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board aims to educate parents and children on healthy living.
The scheme aims to support families with children under 5 in Bridgend, Rhondda Cynon Taf and Merthyr Tydfil with ideas and information on how to play, eat well and improve the health of their family.
We are hoping this scheme will benefit the health of our families, including to reducing obesity in under 5’s throughout Cwm Taf Morgannwg while promoting active play and physical activity.
We’ll be tackling healthy eating subjects such as how to make healthy cooking easy and healthy meal ideas on a budget. We’ll also be covering the best way to manage fussy eaters and delving into the importance of each food group on a growing body.
This will be running across our social media channels, so make sure that you are following us on the below:
The First Contact Physiotherapist (FCPs) service is now available at the surgery in Taff Ely.
If you are suffering from back, neck or spinal pain, you can now refer straight to a physiotherapist based within the surgery, without making an appointment with your GP first. Our FCPs are highly trained and have extensive experience in the assessment and management of musculoskeletal conditions.
The on-site specialist physiotherapists can provide early assessment of the injury along with advice and treatment plans. They are also able to refer for any relevant scans or x-rays, provide prescriptions for medication, plus write sick notes. They provide further onwards referral to other departments if and when this is needed.
The physiotherapists can assist with:
This service is available to anyone aged 16 or over and can be booked by calling the surgery directly. More information can be found here: https://www.taffelycluster.com/physiotherapy.html
Beginning this month, there may be changes to how often some prescriptions will be dispensed. Currently, patients on repeat prescriptions receive these every 28 days, but this will be reviewed by your GP and could be extended up to every 56 days for eligible patients.
This new change will have a wide range of benefits, such as:
However, not all patients will be suitable to change over. This could be for a variety of reasons and your GP will discuss this further at your annual review, but the main exceptions would be:
In the meantime, we ask that our patients continue to ‘Help Us to Help You’ by ordering your prescriptions 7 days in advance of when you are due to allow our services time to deal with the request. We also ask that you only order what you need and return any unused or unwanted medication to pharmacies for safe disposal.
Where possible, we also ask that you order your medication online or via our app. For more details on how to get set up with this, please visit: My Health Online - Taff Ely Primary Care Cluster (taffelycluster.com)
Please note, requests for changes before your next planned review will not usually be considered, unless a member of your household has already had their prescription changed.
If you have any queries please speak to your GP or your community pharmacy on your next planned visit.
Visit the NHS 111 Page for health resources, symptom checker and to find services near you: https://111.wales.nhs.uk/
If you are suffering from painful joints, everyday activities can become uncomfortable and difficult. One of the major causes of pain in the hips or knees is the pressure which being overweight can put on the joints. This puts you at risk of osteoarthritis, which is a condition where the protective cartilage on the ends of your bones breaks down, which causes mobility issues, pain and swelling.
Our new 12-week joint care programme aims to help you improve your lifestyle with gentle exercise sessions and nutrition advice to help you to lose weight and take pressure of your joints.
About the programme
In this programme, you will get to join in with a 2-hour session each week at your local leisure centre. In these sessions, you will be invited to take part in 1 hour of light exercise, which will teach you some simple exercises which you can replicate at home too. There is also an additional weekly exercise class available for a small fee if you wish to do the exercise sessions twice a week.
After this, our experts offer an hour of nutritional advice to help you to improve your lifestyle and diet at home. This will include some practical cooking sessions, where our team will show you quick and affordable meals and cooking tips, to help you make changes to your everyday diet.
How to join your nearest joint care programme
To get started with the 12-week joint care programme, you can speak to your GP, nurse, or physiotherapy about joining. They will be able to assess your current health and wellbeing and let you know if the programme is suitable for you. To find the contact details of your Taff Ely healthcare practice, click here.
Sessions are held at local leisure centres in the Taff Ely area, so get in touch with your healthcare practice to have a chat about your joint problems and to get started on the road to a healthier lifestyle.
To learn more about the programme in Taff Ely, click here.
Or, to find out more from NHS Wales about the scheme, click here
HENRY supports thousands of families across the UK, by partnering with parents to transform family life. The support offered for families from pregnancy up to 12 years covers some of the major factors which can impact a family’s health:
We know that reams of information doesn’t help, understanding what your family does well and helping parents to gain the confidence, skills and knowledge is key to making real change. At HENRY the teamwork with parents to decide on their own strategies to achieve their goals.
HENRY’s support takes a holistic approach to the things that will have a real impact later on in life to help decrease the risk of health-related issues such as tooth decay, obesity, and diseases like cancer and diabetes. You can take part in:
Family Programmes: Group or 1-to-1 multi-week sessions, working alongside parents individually to come up with a healthy living strategy which works for them.
Workshops: Focussed, one-off sessions looking at topics like fussy eating, active play, oral health or starting solids.
Families who have previously joined a HENRY Programme have seen sustained changes in:
If you would like to help break an unhealthy lifestyle cycle, why not give a HENRY programme a go. Click here to see what HENRY can do for you and your family.
Kooth is a free mental wellbeing service available for Taff Ely’s 11-18yr olds which provides professional counselling, useful resources and tools for young people to take ownership of their mental health.
The platform allows young people to speak with fully trained and qualified counsellors up until 10pm, 365 days a year. Kooth also integrates with Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS), the Samaritans and the emergency services so those needing additional support can be referred by the team of Kooth counsellors.
Kooth has discussion boards and a community space where young people can anonymously share their own experiences and speak with others experiencing similar issues. This encourages young people to learn from each other and to open up about their own stories.
All discussions are moderated to ensure that the information on the platform are factual and appropriate for young people.
Kooth has a set of self help tools, which show young people healthier ways to cope with issues they are facing. Online journaling and goal setting tools mean that they are able to take control of their mental wellbeing and track their progress.
There are no waiting lists or referrals required. Kooth can be accessed for free and at any time. Click here to explore the platform for yourself.
Please see below for an up to date poster detailing Covid response resources to help with our patients' mental health.
Also, in addition to these, please be aware there is a 'Safe Space Cafe' which will be taking place at Salem Chapel (in Church Village) between 10am and 12, starting after Easter, and this would be ideal for those experiencing anxiousness, loneliness and the vulnerable.
And finally, please note that our Community Co-ordinators are keeping up to date information about local activities on their new facebook page.