Working families in Torfaen find support in worrying times from our Helping Working Families project
Paying high prices for childcare and family activities, along with a lack of support, are some of the biggest challenges affecting working parents with young children living in Torfaen.
Added to the cost of living crisis, high energy bills and with Christmas just a few months away, families are worried about how they’re going to pay for everything.
Several families have shared their stories with us as part of a community consultation for our Big Lottery funded project, Helping Working Families Torfaen. The families live in the Torfaen area, with a child or children under the age of 18 and are experiencing in-work poverty.
Suzy Sorby, our Helping Working Families Project Officer, said:
“Families have told us they are scared for winter, with energy bills increasing and no extra disposable income to help afford these payments.
There’s also a worry about Christmas, without the pressure parents are already under to make it the most magical time of the year.
Our Helping Working Families project brings people together in a friendly, open environment to find out what matters to them in today’s tough times. We’re putting into practice some of their great ideas for making life a little easier.
We’re also noticing how working with our volunteers is having a positive effect on their wellbeing.”
With a lot of input from parents involved in the project and with support from partner organisations, Suzy has organised a range of activities. These include the One Pot Wonders group (which is about cooking on a budget) and Reflect The Heat, which shows how to use reflective radiator panels to lower heating costs. There’s also a Halloween event planned for young children to get together and have some fun.
Kim Hale from Pontypool, said:
“As a busy working mum, I find I have less time to go out and make friends.
This group has bought together like-minded people from all areas of Torfaen with a sense of community and I enjoy the fact I’m helping others.”
Kristina Jones, also from Pontypool, is another volunteer. She agrees:
“I have always been made to feel very welcome by Suzy.
Reflect the Heat and One Pot Wonders is not only making me feel that it will help my family financially-also being involved in these projects gives me a sense of belonging to a group, which is really helping my mental health and wellbeing.
I am excited that the One Pot Wonders are also going to provide my family with more variety of healthy foods.”
Suzy Sorby continued:
“It’s been amazing to see how well the project is doing thanks to the families, who are determined to make things better for themselves and others.”
Anyone interested in the group or volunteering with our Helping Working Families can get in touch with Suzy by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org