Focus has been given to keeping Denbighshire healthy over the past five years.
Building independence and resilience in our communities has been a priority for Denbighshire County Council as part of its Corporate Plan 2017-2022, which set the direction for the authority for the past five years.
During this time the Council has secured recognition from the Alzheimer’s Society for working towards becoming a Dementia friendly organisation and the Council launched its Carers’ Charter, a commitment to unpaid carers throughout the county.
The number of allotment spaces in the county has increased to 272, including an extension of the allotment site in Denbigh by 30 plots.
Work has also been carried out to raise awareness of and prevent domestic abuse, while safeguarding learning has been provided for staff to offer guidance on reporting concerns they may have about vulnerable people living in our communities.
Councillor Bobby Feeley, the Council’s Lead Member for Well-being and Independence, said: “We have been working hard to create resilient communities in Denbighshire, focusing on promoting people’s health and well-being and encouraging them to remain as independent as possible.
“We have engaged with our communities to ensure there are strong support networks in place and people have more involvement in decisions affecting their future well-being.
“At the same time we have continued to make sure people at risk of abuse or exploitation are safeguarded.
“I’d like to thank all the residents and partner organisations who have worked with the Council to make this possible and who have helped improve the health and wellbeing of our communities.”
The Council helped create Community Resource Teams (CRT) to provide seamless health and social care services in partnership with Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board.
They focus on working together to provide care closer to home, offering better provision with an increased focus and investment on prevention and early intervention delivering comprehensive, flexible and responsive multi-agency and multi-disciplinary community health and social care services.
Health staff including community nurses, physiotherapists, occupational therapists and older person’s mental health teams and social services staff including social workers, occupational therapists, social care practitioners, community navigators and dementia social care practitioners are based together and other services link with the teams, for example carer assessors, voluntary organisations and GPs.
Rhyl’s CRT has been in place since 2017, Ruthin and Corwen were established in February 2019, Denbigh was established in 2020 and Prestatyn opened in April 2021.
The Council launched its Carers’ Charter on Carers Rights Day in November 2020.
It was produced in consultation with local unpaid carers and Denbighshire Carers Strategy Group.
It sets out the Council’s pledge for unpaid carers to have the right to be treated with courtesy, respect and dignity as well as the right to an individual assessment for the needs of the unpaid carer to be identified separately from the person for whom they are caring, as well as giving unpaid carers a voice.
The Council was also involved in the adoption of Young Carers ID Cards for North Wales which launched in March 2021.
The cards help young unpaid carers in Wales to be identified, feel validated, and receive the support they deserve.
A new domestic abuse policy has been adopted by the Council with steps taken to promote the policy and to further support education about domestic abuse and has included showing support for White Ribbon Day, along with Denbighshire Leisure Limited.
Cllr Mark Young, the Council’s Lead Member for Planning, Public Protection and Safer Communities, said: “Ending domestic abuse is one of our priorities under the Corporate Plan and that message is more important than ever with a significant increase in violence, harassment and abuse towards women during the coronavirus pandemic.
“An estimated 90% of children whose parents are abused witness that abuse and the effects are traumatic and long-lasting. When a child witnesses domestic abuse, this is child abuse, and between 40% and 70% of these children are also direct victims of the abuse that is happening at home.
“We are aware of the impact that domestic abuse has and recognise the pressures that many victims are under and want to get the message out that you don’t need to suffer and that help is there for you.
“We would also encourage family and friends to look out for each other and ask the difficult questions if you have suspicions. Information on the Live Fear Free campaign may be found at www.gov.wales/live-fear-free.”
In February 2020 Denbighshire County Council was given recognition for its efforts to work towards becoming a dementia friendly council with Alzheimer’s Society recognition through its Dementia Friendly Communities initiative for its work to raise awareness and provide support.
This included the delivery of Dementia Friends information sessions for staff and councillors, a staff engagement network, while libraries in the county offer a books on prescription service. There is also a reduction in Council Tax for people living with dementia, while help with wheelie bins is also provided.
Denbighshire’s library service continued to provide a valued service during lockdown, despite the buildings being closed and the staff team being redeployed to our proactive calling work.
Libraries’ digital offer was supported by a £250,000 investment from Welsh Government into the all-Wales Borrowbox service of downloadable e-books and e-audiobooks to increase the range and volume of stock available while Denbighshire also invested in Pressreader, giving free digital access to over 3,000 worldwide newspapers and magazines.
Before the Covid-19 pandemic we continued to develop Talking Points to improve information, advice and assistance service at the heart of the community.
Talking Points offers an opportunity for Denbighshire residents to meet with health, social care and third sector staff in their own community to talk with them about the well-being outcomes they desire for themselves or others.
Since the pandemic the service has operated digitally.
For further information on the support that is available in Denbighshire please contact Denbighshire Single Point of Access by phone on 0300 456 1000 or email [email protected].
You can find out more about the Corporate Plan 2017-2022 at www.denbighshire.gov.uk/corporate-plan-ambition-achievements