LEADING North Wales organisations made great strides in supporting people experiencing mental health issues or isolation during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Led by Conwy Mind and funded by Conwy Valley and North West Wales Coast Community Rail Partnership and Carneddau Landscape Partnership Scheme, more than 80 people took part in the Walking for Wellbeing programme throughout July.
All routes began at a bus stop or train station and included socially distanced leader-led hikes of varying difficulties and lengths around Conwy, Llanrwst and Abergwyngregyn.
The final leg took place in Betws-y-Coed on Wednesday, where participants also enjoyed sensory activities and mindfulness sessions.
Karen Williams, Community Rail Officer at Conwy Valley and North West Wales Coast Community Rail Partnership, said: “Many people have been impacted by the pandemic, whether that be financially, during lockdowns and self-isolation or because they were unable to see family and friends.
“We were pleased to be able to give our support to Conwy Mind in organising the walks and encouraging people to get outside, enjoy the fresh air and breathtaking scenery of the Carneddau region, and to meet new people.
“These events have been a huge success and we must also give thanks to Cartrefi Conwy, whose community wellbeing team were on hand to assist less-mobile walkers along the way.”
Nick Meakins, a Trainer at Conwy Mind, says being active and connecting with others are simple ways to improve wellbeing as part of the charity’s ‘5 Ways to Wellbeing’ course.
“Everyone can improve their wellbeing and build up resilience through simple activities, like a walk with other people,” said Nick.
“As a local mental health charity, we have been excited to offer the Wellbeing Walks alongside our existing programme of services and support available for people in Conwy county. We hope to be putting on more walks in the autumn, which will be open to everybody.”
Beca Roberts, Carneddau Landscape Partnership Scheme Community Engagement Officer, added: “We cannot underestimate the importance nature has played in helping people deal with the stresses of Covid-19 over the last year.
“Many people have taken their first steps out into the Carneddau due to the sudden focus on staying local, and we wanted to encourage this curiosity further with this series of walks.
“Walking the Carneddau doesn’t necessarily mean reaching the higher peaks, it’s all about getting outdoors and enjoying our local forests, fields and lakesides – we’re so glad to have been able to support people in doing this over the last few weeks.”
For more information on Conwy Mind and how they can help, visit www.conwymind.org.uk, call 01492 879907 or follow them on social media @ConwyMind.
For more on Conwy Valley and North West Wales Coast Community Rail Partnership, visit www.conwyvalleyrailway.co.uk.
Visit www.eryri.llyw.cymru/looking-after/carneddau-partnership for the latest news and information from Carneddau Landscape Partnership.
NOTES: Conwy Valley and North West Wales Coast Community Rail Partnership works in collaboration with Transport for Wales and is hosted by Creating Enterprise, a social enterprise which demonstrates a strong social value, investing in communities, volunteers and finding employment to bring about positive change across North Wales.