In recent months the Welsh Government offered to support care homes by providing temporary visiting “pods” for approximately six months in order to help facilitate safe visitation to care home residents by their families and friends. £3m was made available to cover procurement and installation of 100 leased units, until longer term solutions could be found and sourced.
The Abbeyfield Brecon Society, which is located off Camden Road, Brecon, is a supported housing facility for the elderly, but is not a care home. Recognising the important value of personal visitation in terms of social engagement and good mental health of residents, the Society’s Trustees and House Manager, Emma Debenham considered what provision they could usefully make on a more long-term basis, to provide risk assessed safe visiting arrangements during the Covid pandemic and indeed afterwards.
As a consequence, a modest scheme has been planned to redesign the front entrance to the building by extending out the existing porch to bring it in line with the main building, enclosing the sides using glass to make it weatherproof and adding new seating and heating, enabling the residents and their visitors to sit in comfort. The front will be left open at this point in time to ensure that fresh air can also circulate. The Society applied for Covid specific Lottery Community Funding and following the usual application scrutiny the Society’s bid was approved and plans are afoot to commence the project as soon as possible.
Ms Debenham indicated that the safety of residents and staff would always be paramount at Abbeyfield, and in making the funding bid the Society had also acknowledged that its community volunteers would again be given the opportunity of having a safe interface with them. She said “We feel Abbeyfield is an integral part of the Brecon community, and all of us want to get back to as near normal as possible in the forthcoming months. However, until then all recommended safety provisions will be strictly maintained.”
Shortly after receiving the good news about the Lottery funding, Abbeyfield Brecon received a letter from local MP Fay Jones congratulating them. Read the letter from MP Fay Jones.