Plans to develop the Council’s successful hubs programme to focus on wellbeing, community engagement and independent living services have been unveiled.
The Council has outlined proposals to build on the positive impact the 11 community hubs and city centre hub have had in the city by delivering Community Wellbeing Hubs in north and west Cardiff.
Existing hubs have been established in areas where deprivation is greater and people are in the most need of services. But with an increasing older population, and the increasing impact of isolation on people’s wellbeing, the Council is focussing on extending the hubs programme to other areas to provide a range of services and support based on the needs of an area.
Community Wellbeing Hubs will offer a wide range of independent living advice and involve the community, particularly older people, in events and activities as well as provide enhanced services and improved community engagement by working with partner organisations, local groups and volunteers.
Branch libraries in the city will be brought into the hubs structure and following a review of each area to assess priorities, facilities will be developed to offer a wide range of services based on local need.
To improve community engagement and participation, the Council is proposing to create four new inclusion officers to provide hands on support for local groups including co-ordinating engagement opportunities, building local knowledge and networks, and linking with other community-based services.
Cabinet Member for Housing and Communities, Cllr Lynda Thorne, said:
“I am extremely proud of our community hubs programme which has been so successful in areas of the city where there is the greatest need. They are real focal points for their communities and have made it so much easier for customers to engage with the Council and vice versa.
“However, with more and more people living for longer in the city, and loneliness and social exclusion being a real issue for many, it makes sense to take the principles from our successful hubs programme, where we have delivered better services as well as efficiencies, and develop new wellbeing facilities that provide services responsive to their customers’ needs.
“This is a very exciting proposal which will help us to maximise the potential of our buildings, mitigate the impact of the end of the Communities First programme and deliver better and extended services for people living in the north and west of the city.”
The proposals also include plans to further develop Central Library Hub, bringing advice and library provision together to achieve efficiencies and a more joined up approach to delivering services. These include putting in place an improved meet and greet service on the ground floor, multi-skilling staff to ensure a better customer experience and increasing resources in key areas such as digital inclusion.
With a focus on hubs and integrated services, the Council will also ensure the city continues to have a strong core library provision by creating a new Library Strategy and Development team to develop and enhance services.
The proposals will be considered by Cabinet at its next meeting on Thursday, May 17.