8 Apr 2019

Welsh Government has completed its consultation on Connected Communities: Tackling Loneliness and Social Isolation and published a summary of the 234 responses.

Messages from these responses include:

  • The sector needs longer-term, more sustainable funding of three-to-five years, to avoid schemes having to close soon after they have been set up.
  • Welsh Government should encourage employers to set up volunteering schemes to enable staff to take time off to volunteer.
  • Welsh Government should set up a national awareness campaign to promote volunteering.
  • Community infrastructure should support social connections such as access to community spaces, a good transport network, access to digital technology, good quality accessible housing and good neighbourhood design.
  • Better access to information about available services.
  • Better resourced community transport services.
  • Ministerial responsibility for loneliness and isolation should be cross-portfolio.

Our response to the consultation also commented that:

  • The social care sector and third sector need to develop better partnerships
  • More use of, and greater awareness of, social prescribing
  • It should be recognised the much volunteering is informal
  • Social capital has a vital role in tackling loneliness and isolation

The Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services said: 'We want to ensure that we take the time to take full account of the responses, the evidence base and the feedback from our engagement events, in order to develop a comprehensive, cross-government response to what is a multi- faceted issue and one which will meet stakeholders' expectations. We aim to publish a final strategy later this year.'