Friday, 22 December 2017

NEW 50+ Support Service at Merthyr Housing

Are you 50+ and homeless, threatened with or at risk of becoming homeless?
MTHA is here to help if you are 50+ and homeless, at risk of becoming homeless or have housing related issues such as rent arrears, problems with benefits and debt worries.

Our support Service can give you general and specialist housing and tenancy advice if you are experiencing any difficulties within your home.

We can support you to register on the common Housing register and generally advocate on your behalf.

Our services are all provided on a one to one basis in tenants' own homes.

Our support is on-going to help you successfully sustain and maintain your tenancy.

Our objective is to...

Support and empower you to gain the confidence to deal with any issues you are facing.
Help with budgeting and money management training to increase financial confidence in order to deal with the challenges brought in by the welfare reform.
Support with life skills that will help you to maintain and sustain your tenancy.
Provide support and access to employment opportunities.
Work with you on a one to one basis in your own home at your convenience.

Please contact Thomas on 01685 352800 for help and advice.

Ladies Boxfit classes at Dowlais Engine House

FREE Junior Box-fit classes 8-16 year olds

Wednesday, 20 December 2017

Cwm Taf UHB appoints new Vice Chair

On behalf of all our members and staff, VAMT would like to offer congratulations to Maria Thomas on her appointment as Vice Chair of Cwm Taf University Health Board.  Well done Maria!

For the full press release click here

Monday, 18 December 2017

Grants to Transform Local Spaces

Grow Wild UK awards funding for projects that brings people together through activities that connect their community and celebrate UK native wildflowers, plants and/or fungi. The Fund is a partnership between Grow Wild UK, the Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew and Lemos&Crane.

Projects must:

  • Stand out from the crowd. 
  • Focus on UK native wildflowers, plants and/or fungi, highlighting the importance of these species for the environment, and for quality of life. 
  • Engage one or more of these groups: young people aged 12-18, students and young people aged 18-25, people living in urban areas, people experiencing hardship and reduced access to services, adults that are less engaged with their community and environmental activities. 
  • Encourage large-scale community involvement, ideally in the hundreds. 
  • Deliver the project in a space or location that is accessible to the general public. 
  • Be delivered by voluntary, youth or community groups that are constituted, not-for-profit, or charitable. Also includes secondary schools.
It is estimated that the fund will support 50 groups across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland in 2018.

For more information click on

The deadline for applications is 15 January 2018 (12pm)

Thursday, 14 December 2017

Meeting Postponed : Dementia Friendly Community Steering Group

Due to a high number of apologies, tomorrow's meeting of the Dementia Friendly Communities Steering Group (Merthyr Tydfil) has been postponed.
The next meeting will take place on Friday 19th January at VAMT offices from 10.30 am until 12.30 pm.
If you would like to be part of making Merthyr Tydfil dementia friendly then why not become a Dementia Friend?  Training is available - please contact Elaine James, Chair of the Steering Group:
email: or ring 01685 353984.

Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Budget consultation - Police and Crime Commissioner and the Police and Crime Plan

The Police and Crime Commissioner for South Wales is carrying out a budget consultation and seeking views on budget proposals for 2017/18 and the Police and Crime Plan

The Commissioner’s budget plans rest on a 5% increase in the precept which means an increase of £10.91 per year or 3p per day for a band D property. Whilst nobody wants to increase the charge, people want to live and work in safe communities.

Responses to the consultation will be help inform the decision making of the Police and Crime panel when they meet in the New Year to consider the level of precept for 2018-2019 so we hope that as many individuals and agencies concerned with keeping our communities and vulnerable individuals safe will respond with their views.

The consultation asks 5 questions (as set out below) and responses are needed by 28th December 2017.

Consultation Questions

  • What are your views on the need to maintain an effective police service during a period of austerity - in particular, maintaining a strong neighbourhood presence?
  • Are there areas of South Wales Police activity that you would you be happy to see cut?
  • What would you consider the right level for the police precept for South Wales for 2018-19?
  • What are your views on capital expenditure plans for next year?
  • Do you think there are areas of the Police service that should be protected from further cuts? 
Responses can be emailed to:

Full details of the budget proposals and contact for postal responses can be found via on the website or via this link.

Monday, 4 December 2017

Health, Social Care and Wellbeing Forum

Don't forget the Health, Social Care and Wellbeing Forum this Wednesday morning at VAMT offices.  10 am to 12 Noon.

Agenda includes presentations from South Wales Ambulance Trust and also Valleys Steps.

This isn't just any Forum's the December Forum. 
So there may also be a mince pie or two!!

Thursday, 23 November 2017

Green Spaces/Environmental Activities

VAMT, on behalf of the newly formed Green Spaces/Environmental Network were tasked with mapping  environmental-related activities across the County Borough.  If you've not yet completed the questionnaire, there is a link here
Please return to asap.
Many thanks for your help.

Inform - Last call for articles

Just a reminder that if you'd like to include anything in the December edition of Inform, VAMT's hard copy magazine, the deadline is tomorrow, 24 November.  Please forward articles to

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

Job Vacancy Working Skills for Adults 2

Working Skills for Adults 2 are looking to recruit a part time IT / digital inclusion tutor (18.5 hours pw)  Full details are available  here

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Inform - December 2017

Deadline for the next edition of Inform, VAMT's hard copy magazine, is 24 November, for publication in December.  Articles are welcomed, so if you'd like to let others know what you're up to,  please contact

Wythnos Genedlaethol Diogelu 13th - 17th Tachwedd 2017
National Safeguarding Week 13th - 17th November 2017

The Truth Project is coming to Merthyr Tydfil

The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) is currently investigating whether public bodies and other non-state institutions have taken seriously their duty of care to protect children from CSA in England and Wales. This is being carried out through the work of the Truth Project.

The Truth Project is of fundamental importance to the Inquiry’s work, and provides victims and survivors of CSA with an opportunity to share their experiences with us, without their accounts being tested, challenged or contradicted. All information that victims and survivors share with us will directly inform the conclusions and recommendations we make for protecting children from CSA in the future.

In the coming months, the Truth Project will be in Merthyr Tydfil to enable victims and survivors of CSA to share their experience in a safe and confidential way.

We would also like to make you aware of the opportunities it can provide victims and survivors of CSA to share their experiences with the Inquiry and how it links with the wider work of the Inquiry.

Monday, 13 November 2017

Help and Support from Institute of Fundraising Cymru

Registered charities with two or more members of staff and with voluntary income of up to £50,000 are invited to apply for fundraising support as part of the Institute of Fundraising Cymru's  Big Lottery Funded “Fundraising Health Check and Executive Coaching” project.
Successful charities will be matched with an experienced coach who will help them develop a new fundraising strategy, thereby increasing the fundraising skills and knowledge within the charity.

For an information pack and application form please contact or call 02920 340062.

Afon Taf's 50th Anniversary Christmas Gala

Takes place on Wednesday 20th December - full details here

VAMT needs your help - Survey

Please help us shape the support we can provide in the future by completing  this short questionnaire.  It should take less than 5 minutes to complete.


If you are a community group / organisation based in any of the rural wards in Merthyr Tydfil and RCT, this project could support your group with any digital needs.

To find out more or get in touch, click on the link below:

Monday, 6 November 2017

Stroke Association Santa Run 10 December 2017

Further details are available here

Cwm Taf Draft Wellbeing Plan

Mae ghredu Gwirfoddol Merthyr Tudful yn gweithio gyda gwasanaethau cyhoeddus eraill yn ein cymunedau i gynllunio sut gallwn ni wella bywydau ar gyfer cenedlaethau heddiw ac yfory, drwy weithio gyda'i gilydd mewn ffyrdd gwahanol. Bydd cynrychiolwyr gwasanaethau cyhoeddus yn siarad â chymunedau am eu Cynllun Lles drafft yn y canolfannau canlynol:
Taf (Cyfarfod Cyffredinol Blynyddol Interlink)
Cwm Cynon
Cwm Rhondda
Merthyr Tudful
Tŷ Dysgu, Nantgarw
Canolfan Oriau Dydd y Santes Fair, Aberdâr
Canolfan Chwaraeon Cwm Rhondda, Ystradyfodwg
Y Ganolfan Ddinesig, Merthyr Tudful
Dewch i rannu'ch barn a'ch syniadau, a chael dweud eich dweud.
Voluntary Action Merthyr Tydfil are working with other public services in our communities to plan how we can improve lives now and for future generations, by working together in different ways. Public services representatives will be talking to communities about their draft Well-being Plan in the following places:
Taf (Interlink AGM)
Merthyr Tydfil
Ty Dysgu, Nantgarw
St. Mair’s Day Centre, Aberdare
Rhondda Sports Centre, Ystrad
Civic Centre, Merthyr Tydfil
Come along, share your thoughts and ideas and have your say.

Wednesday, 1 November 2017

Volunteer Management Training - December 2017

Days One and Two:   Wednesday 6th and Thursday 7th December 2017 at Interlink

Days Three and Four:  Wednesday 13th and Thursday 14th 2017 December at VAMT

Cost:  £20 per day Members    £40 per day Non Members

For anyone who has a responsibility for recruiting, training and supporting volunteers.  The sessions will cover:
·       Introduction to volunteering
·       Preparing for volunteers
·       Volunteer recruitment
·       Volunteer selection and induction
·       Getting the best from your volunteers

In order to book please contact Kath Price at Interlink - or telephone 01443 846200.

Monday, 30 October 2017

Do you want to have a say in an exciting new project happening in Merthyr?

When: Friday 3rd November between 10 - 12.30.

Where: Cefn Coed Community Centre. Old Drill Hall Road CF48 2NA

To RSVP: email

Marks and Spencer’s and the Social Change Agency want to hear from locals about what really matters to them. This is the start of a two year project by M&S who are trying to lend a helping hand to your community, but before they start, they need to hear about issues from locals: that’s where you come in.

Are you local to Merthyr Tydfil? Do you have friends and family in MerthyrTydfil? What would you like to see change to enable the local community to be happier and healthier?

This is your chance to really be heard. Put aside 2.5 hours of your week, have your voice heard and be part of an exciting plan to help your neighbourhood.

To RSVP or if you have any questions, simply email:

We are looking forward to meeting you and listening to what really matters in Merthyr.

Feel free to forward this to your local friends and family.

Friday, 27 October 2017

Latest news

20/10/2017 - The Henry Smith Charity Re-launches Grants Programmes

The Henry Smith Charity’s Main Grants programme is now open for applications following a review of its guidelines and criteria.
The Henry Smith Charity distributes over £28 million a year in grant programmes designed to reduce social and economic disadvantage in the UK.
Following a review of its grant procedures, the Funder has refined its Main Grant programmes, separating it into two defined funds under the same new strategy that aims to work with people for whom other sources of support have failed, been inappropriate or are simply not available.
This will be achieved through the following priorities:
  • Increasing resilience - empowering people, encouraging integration and personal independence, helping people to recover and move on.
  • Creating opportunities and life chances - raising aspiration, equipping people with new skills, unlocking and enabling potential, and providing the means to improve life circumstances.
  • Empowering communities - strengthening and connecting communities and making people feel valued, providing opportunities for social connections and relationships, encouraging participation and inclusion.
The Charity’s grants programmes now stand as follows:
  • The Main Grants: Improving Lives Fund is the largest of the Charity’s funds, and will support the work of established charitable organisations with incomes of up to £2 million. Funding is available for projects that help people when other sources of support have failed, are inappropriate, or are simply not available.
  • The Main Grants: Strengthening Communities Fund is designed to support small charitable organisations working at grassroots level in the most disadvantaged areas of the UK.
  • The County Grants programme provides grants for smaller organisations working with disadvantaged people and communities in one of eight English counties. Groups should note that funding for Surrey is not available until early 2018.
  • The Holiday Grants for Children programme provides grants for recreational trips and holidays for groups of children aged 13 and under in the UK who are disabled or disadvantaged. These are one-off short grants.
  • The Christian Projects grant programme awards grants to projects that explicitly promote the Christian faith in the UK.
Grant sizes are generally between £10,000 and £60,000 and are for charities and not-for-profit organisations, including social enterprises that are based and working in the UK.
There are no deadlines. Applications are considered on a regular basis, depending on the fund applied to. 

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Trustees Week events - strengthening governance in third sector organisations / Digwyddiadau Wythnos Ymddiriedolwyr - gryfhau llywodraethu ym mudiadau trydydd sector

As part of Trustees Week 2017, Third Sector Support Wales will be holding a series of events on the theme of governance.

Good governance is crucial to the running of any third sector organisation, but in a fast-changing environment which places increasing pressures on organisations, trustees need accessible guidance to support them in setting and maintaining high standards of governance.

The events will look at the latest regional and national developments in relation to governance and feature talks on the new Charity Governance Code and PQASSO, the quality mark for the third sector.

The events will take place in three different locations across Wales during November and December:
  • 14 November 2017 (9.30am-12.30pm), Baglan Community Church, Port Talbot
  • 16 November 2017 (9.30am-12.30pm), Colwyn Bay Cricket Club, Colwyn Bay, Conwy 
  • 8 December 2017 (9.30am-12.30pm), Crundale Community Hall, Crundale, Pembrokeshire
For further information and to book your place visit

Fel rhan o Wythnos Ymddiriedolwyr 2017 bydd Cefnogi Trydydd Sector Cymru yn cynnal cyfres o ddigwyddiadau ar thema llywodraethu.

Mae llywodraethu da yn hanfodol wrth redeg unrhyw fudiad trydydd sector, ond wrth i’r amgylchedd allanol newid yn gyflym gan roi pwysau cynyddol ar fudiadau, mae ar ymddiriedolwyr angen arweiniad hwylus i’w cefnogi i osod a chynnal safonau uchel wrth lywodraethu.

Bydd y digwyddiadau yn edrych ar y datblygiadau rhanbarthol a chenedalethol diweddaraf sy’n ymwenud â llywodraethu ac yn cynnwys siaradwyr ar y Cod Llywodraethu newydd i Elusennau yn ogystal â PQASSO, nod ansawdd ar gyfer y trydydd sector.

Bydd y digwyddiadau yn cael eu cynnal mewn tri lleoliad gwahanol ar draws Cymru yn ystod Tachwedd a Rhagfyr:
  • 14 Tachwedd 2017 (9.30am- 12.30pm), Eglwys Gymunedol Baglan, Port Talbot
  • 16 Tachwedd 2017 (9.30am-12.30pm), Clwb Criced Bae Colwyn, Bae Colwyn, Conwy
  • 8 Rhagfyr 2017 (9.30am-12.30pm), Neuadd Gymunedol Crundale, Crundale, Sir Benfro

Am fwy o wybodaeth ac i archebu eich lle ewch i:

Friday, 6 October 2017

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

St Tydfil Shopping Centre is giving groups in the Merthyr area a chance to apply for £500 worth of vouchers to spend at the shopping centre as part of its St Tydfil Cares Community Fund.


This time the vouchers are for use at Iceland to help a group organise a festive event. Perhaps a group would like to arrange a Christmas lunch for those who are less fortunate, or a care home would like to organise a party for Merthyr’s older generation. Whatever the reason, St Tydfil Shopping Centre would like to hear about it.

If you would like to nominate, please email explaining what event or activity you would like support for. One group will then be chosen from all the nominations to receive the £500 worth of vouchers. 

Nominations can also be made by sending a letter to:

St Tydfil Community Fund
c/o PMW Communications
PO Box 167
EX39 9DU

The closing date for nominations is Sunday 12th November.

For more information please contact Sally Burfoot on 


Please find details of an event being organised by Romani Arts here


The VAMT Annual General Meeting will be held at 11 am on Friday 10th November at Bessemers Hotel. 

The guest speaker will be Councillor Kevin O’Neill, the Leader of Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council. In addition, there will be a presentation by David Davies, the High Sheriff of Mid Glamorgan. 

We will also be presenting the Nicola Park Award 2017 for “Outstanding Contribution to Volunteering in Merthyr Tydfil”. If you wish to nominate there is still time. Nomination forms are still available in English  and Welsh and are open to nominations for a group or an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to volunteering in the County Borough of Merthyr Tydfil.

The agenda and reply slip for the AGM can be found here

Monday, 2 October 2017

St Tydfil Cares Community Fund

St Tydfil Shopping Centre is giving groups in the Merthyr area one last chance to apply for £500 worth of vouchers to spend at the shopping centre as part of its St Tydfil Cares Community Fund.

 This time the vouchers are for use at Iceland to help a group organise a festive event. Perhaps a group would like to arrange a Christmas lunch for those who are less fortunate, or a care home would like to organise a party for Merthyr’s older generation. Whatever the reason, St Tydfil Shopping Centre would like to hear about it.

If you would like to nominate, please email explaining what event or activity you would like support for. One group will then be chosen from all the nominations to receive the £500 worth of vouchers. 

 Nominations can also be made by sending a letter to:

 St Tydfil Community Fund

c/o PMW Communications

PO Box 167



EX39 9DU
The closing date for nominations is Sunday 12th November.

 St Tydfil Cares Community Fund Terms & Conditions: The closing date for nominations is Sunday 12th November. Any entries received after that date will not be counted. The judge’s decision is final. The winning group will be required to attend a photo presentation at St Tydfil Shopping Centre. The photo will be distributed to the media. St Tydfil Shopping Centre reserves the right to award the prize to a runner-up if contact is not received from the selected winner after 10 days. The winner is required to be involved in a follow-up photo call showing how the £500 vouchers were used. It is the winner’s responsibility to check the store’s voucher terms and conditions. The prize does not have a cash alternative.

Samaritans Recruitment Drive for Volunteers

Please find details of the Samaritan's next recruitment event here

Descriptions of the volunteer roles available are here

Wednesday, 27 September 2017

Inform Magazine

Have a look at our latest copy of Inform which includes photographs of local volunteers receiving certificates from Michael Sheen at our Volunteering Celebration at the Red House in Merthyr Tydfil recently.

Tuesday, 26 September 2017

Michael Sheen's visit to the VAMT Volunteering Celebration

Have a look at this lovely film of Michael Sheen's visit to the VAMT Volunteering Celebration recently held at the Red House in Merthyr Tydfil

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Community Leadership - free taster training course

A Community Leadership taster training course (see Poster) will be held in the VAMT offices in Merthyr Tydfil at 11am - 4.30pm on Saturday 20th January 2018. It is organised by Citizens Cymru. To book please Email Richard Weaver from Citizens Cymru Wales or phone him on 07377 815073

It is free of charge.

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

SIEILOC - performance at Soar Theatre, Merthyr Tydfil

Canolfan Soar, Merthyr Tydfil are pleased to promote this Welsh-language performance, for Thursday 21st September at 1.30 pm.  Please share with your contacts.

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Nicola Park Award for an Outstanding Contribution to Volunteering 2017 - Open for Applications

This year's Nicola Park Award for an Outstanding Contribution to Volunteering was launched at yesterday's Celebration of Volunteering at the Red House.

Nomination forms are available in English  and Welsh and are open to nominations for a group or an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to volunteering in the County Borough of Merthyr Tydfil.

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Same Stripes Different Ways Course

Sharing on behalf of Clybiau Plant Cymru:

ASD Awareness Training

There are 3 spaces remaining on the  "Same Stripes Different Ways" course to be delivered on 30/09/17 at Ton Pentre & Gelli Community Centre.  Click here for more information.

Please contact the organiser directly to book.

Friday, 8 September 2017

Job Vacancy - Clerical Assistant Fixed Term

VAMT currently has a vacancy for a Clerical Assistant on a fixed term contract

application form

job description/person specification

Further details are available from the links above.

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

Global Village - 16 September 2017 at Penderyn Square

Please find information on this year's Global Village event which takes place on Saturday 16 September



Job Vacancy Closing Date - 9 September

Just a reminder that the closing date for the RDP-funded  Cwm Taf Place Based Digital Support project is fast approaching.  Applications need to be received by Friday 8 September.

Further information is available here
Application form here
Job description here
Person specification here

Secondments will be considered.

Inform - late September edition - Call for articles

If there's anything you'd like to share with the wider third sector in Merthyr Tydfil, then please let us have your articles for Inform, VAMT's hard copy magazine.  Will be circulated at the end of September.

Please forward information to by 8 September.
Many thanks in advance.

Friday, 25 August 2017

Cwm Taf UHB recruiting Vice Chair

The Chairman of Cwm Taf University Health Board is very pleased to let you know that the Public Appointments Unit are recruiting a new Vice Chair for Cwm Taf.

The closing date is 11 September 2017 and the successful candidate will take up the role on 2 January 2018.

Here are the links to the Public Appointments information – please can you share widely with anyone who might be interested



Wednesday, 23 August 2017

Cwm Taf Place Based Digital Support

VAMT has a vacancy for a fixed term 12 months post, working across the rural wards of Merthyr Tydfil and Rhondda Cynon Taf.  

Closing date is 9 September, with interviews being held on 15 September.  Secondments to the post will be considered.

Please click in the link below for further information

Tuesday, 22 August 2017

Free Training - Emergency Life Support Training - limited places

Absolute Training & Assessing Ltd. would like to offer the option of complimentary training (Emergency Life Support/First Aid) to a selected number of candidates in the above subject area.
As apart of our community engagement initiative we would like extend the offer of training at no charge in the spirit of voluntary community engagement.
If this is something you would like please feel free to contact me at your earliest convenience.

Kind Regards

Absolute Training & Assessing Ltd.  Navigation Park.  Abercynon.

Monday, 14 August 2017

Job Vacancies - Actif Woods

Thanks to Coed Lleol's success with the Active Inclusion grant three opportunities have arisen for paid roles within the Actif Woods Wales project and two of these are based in South Wales.

Info online via this link:

Friday, 11 August 2017

Go Green 4 Health : Impact Review 2017 / Arolwg Effaith 2017

Groundwork Wales Cymru are pleased to share their Go Green 4 Health Impact Review 2017 - available in English and Welsh

Wednesday, 9 August 2017

Visually Impaired Merthyr - Training

Visually Impaired Merthyr will be running a Finding Your Feet course which will commence in late September. This course was pioneered by Cardiff Institute for the Blind and helps Visually Impaired people to:
Use Public Transport
Manage Money
Access Media and entertainment
Use I T and mobile phones
Teach relatives and friends how to lead Visually Impaired people 

The course will run from 10.30 to 3.30 on three days at fortnightly intervals. Lunch will be provided as we find that the participants need  time to talk with each other and with the presenters.
The course is free an, if it is oversubscribed, it will be repeated. If necessary, transport can be provided. For further details contact Morgan Evans