Literature Wales commissioned to highlight Reading Friends Wales
Reading Friends uses reading to start conversations that bring people together to share stories, make new friends and have fun. We use reading – whether books, magazines, newspapers, or anything else – to start everyone chatting. The programme has been developed with local projects across the UK to reach our target audiences – vulnerable and isolated older people, people with dementia and same generation carers.
Literature Wales delivers the Reading Friends scheme in Wales in partnership with The Reading Agency. We work with volunteers of all ages to build social connections, using reading to spark conversations. Together, we reach some of the most vulnerable members of our society.
Literature Wales works with Conwy Library Service and Swansea Bay University Health Board on the Reading Friends project, with both taking different approaches to tackling the ongoing issue of social isolation and loneliness, as highlighted in the recent Government response here.
Last month, Literature Wales Chief Executive, Lleucu Siencyn, presented the film to the cross party group on Arts and Health to an audience of Assembly Members, Health Boards, and NHS Confederation representatives, that are working together to find ways in which the arts can contribute to the physical and mental wellbeing of the citizens of Wales. As confident advocates for the role of literature in health and wellbeing, Literature Wales is delighted to highlight the transformative power of reading and sharing of stories.
WAHWN, in partnership with the Arts Council of Wales has commissioned 4 short films from arts organisations delivering projects tackling loneliness and isolation throughout Wales. We are thrilled to share the commissioned film, which highlights the valuable impact of the Reading Friends project in Wales.
Jenny, one of the Reading Friends in Conwy, said:
“So much has been lost in the way of social interaction. So to have somebody come to replace the book groups that I used to participate in, is invaluable. ”
To find out more about the Reading Friends projects in Conwy and Swansea, the Reading Friends website: https://readingfriends.org.uk/
To find out more about the Wales Arts Health and Wellbeing Network, follow the link here: https://wahwn.cymru/