blank
Connect with us

Swansea

Helping the homeless with empty crisp packets

Published

on

Students and staff at the University of Wales Trinity Saint David (UWTSD) are working on an innovative project to help the homeless, turning crisp packets into bivy bags to keep people warm and dry on the streets during the winter.

Natasha John, a technician at UWTSD’s Swansea College of Art, came up with the idea after discovering The Crisp Packet Project on Facebook. Founded by Hastings-based artist Pen Huston, the project began life last year and teaches people to make the bags via online workshops. The bags are designed to be placed over a sleeping bag to keep it dry and increase warmth.

“I thought it would be a great thing for the students to do this alongside their other projects,” she says. “It’s a way of using up things that would otherwise go to landfill and benefiting someone else at the same time.”

Natasha has gathered a group of students to help with the project and they aim to give the bivy bags to local homeless charities over the Christmas period. It takes 150 crisp packets to make one bivy bag, so Natasha is appealing to the public to provide as many as they can.

“This project is about giving back to the community, being more aware of vulnerable people and more aware of recycling,” she says. “These packets are usually seen as rubbish but can be used to make a valuable survival blanket. It’s unfortunate that people are sleeping on the streets and need these blankets, but it feels good to be able to help.”

Caroline Thraves, Academic Director, Art & Media at UWTSD is impressed by the initiative: “I am extremely proud of the staff and students who are working on this project,” she says. “This demonstrates what a positive impact art and design can have on the city and its people. Our students and staff are utilising their creative talents to support some of the most vulnerable people whilst also having a positive impact upon the environment which is an issue that is very important to them. Such a brilliant project, such brilliant students and staff.”

Pen Huston, founder of The Crisp Packet Project, said that the Swansea initiative was “just beautiful.”

Advertisement

“I just love the fact students are getting involved,” she said. “It’s such a productive project: great for one use plastics, great for our less fortunate communities to help and save lives this winter. This project brings people together and is really helping, at this time of the pandemic, with mental well-being. It’s a wonderful project helping people to feel positive. You always get a sense of joy when you help someone. This project does this in a nutshell, giving new life to one use plastics and helping so many people along the way. Just magic.”

Anyone who would like to donate crisp packets is asked to contact Natasha at: natasha.john@uwtsd.ac.uk.


Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Environment

Flash flooding as heatwave breaks and Met Office issues thunderstorm warning

Published

on

By

Flash Flooding in Port Talbot

Parts of Port Talbot town centre were underwater today as torrential rain led to flash flooding as the heatwave came to a dramatic end.

The images captured by local, Jim Jones showed cars struggling to pass through flooded streets outside the art-deco former Plaza Cinema on Talbot Road.

The M4 was also waterlogged causing poor driving conditions between junctions 37 and 38 for Pyle and Margam.

The Met Office issued a yellow warning for slow moving thunderstorms that could cause further disruption, including flooding.

A map tweeted by the Met Office appears to show the worst of the storms heading towards Swansea.

The Waterstones book store on Swansea’s Oxford Street was forced to close as water poured into the building from the roof.

(Lead image: Jim Jones)

Advertisement
Continue Reading

Swansea

Unpaid carers in Swansea urged not to miss out on £500 grant

Published

on

By

pexels-photo-233223.jpeg

Unpaid carers who could be entitled to a £500 one-off grant but missed last month’s deadline to register for it are being given a second chance.

Swansea Council say they have already paid out £1,676,000 to more than 3,300 unpaid carers.

Advertisement

But the Welsh Government has decided to re-open registrations for the grant and it means anyone who’s not yet applied can get their application in by September 2.

It is not a new grant and anyone who has already applied does not need to do so again. In Swansea there’s an estimated 950 further unpaid carers who’ve not yet taken the chance to apply for the Welsh Government grant being administered by the council

Anyone who thinks they may be eligible for the payment must apply for the grant online on Swansea Council’s website.

The application page – which includes details about who is eligible and who is not – re-opened on 15 August. Registrations for the grant must be completed by 5pm on 2 September.

Louise Gibbard, Cabinet Member for Care services, said it was good news that the Welsh Government has decided to re-open the grant offer to try to ensure nobody who is eligible misses out.

Advertisement

She said: “At a time where we’re facing a cost of living crisis, I want to thank unpaid carers for their valuable role which often goes unrecognised. Their work now and during the pandemic makes a huge difference to those they support and to health and care services too.

“We’re making it as straightforward as we can to register and we can provide support to anyone who cannot fill in the form themselves and has no-one to help them do it. We have also made local support groups and organisations aware they can fill in the form for the people they are assisting.”

The council say that anyone who believes they may be eligible for a grant must register for it. They’ll then be assessed and a payment made if they are entitled to it.

They add that anyone who has already applied for the unpaid carers’ payment or anyone who has already been paid should not apply again.

Swansea Council stress that this is not a new scheme, it’s just a second chance for anyone who did not apply in time before the scheme closed for the first time in July.

Advertisement
Continue Reading

Music

Singleton Hospital receptionist escapes to the park to fulfil DJ dream

Published

on

By

Swapping the hospital reception desk for his DJ decks will see Ben Vincent fulfil a dream this weekend in front of thousands of music fans.

He will play his biggest gig yet with the opening set of the Escape Festival in Singleton Park.

Advertisement

Ben, 25, said: “The nerves are already kicking in but I just can’t wait to get up there and perform.

“I can’t contain my excitement – it’s a dream come true.

“Having the chance to play at the event in any form is a huge honour but to play the opening set on the main stage is a whole new level of excitement for me.

Ben – performing as DJ Vincent – will swap Singleton Hospital to play the Escape Festival at next door Singleton Park (Image: Swansea Bay NHS)

“It’s not every day you get an opportunity like this and if you could tell 17-year-old me that I’d be playing the main stage in any festival, I’d have cried with excitement.

“This festival has been running in Swansea since 2000 and has been a huge part of the Welsh music scene for so long.

“It showcases heaps of talents from local artists to huge names from across all genres in the UK. Having been as a punter in the past, it’s extra special for me because I know what an incredible event it is from start to finish.”

Advertisement

Ben’s big opportunity comes after he won a nationwide competition to find upcoming talent.

Now his stage name – DJ Vincent – will be in lights alongside some of the greats of the DJ world including Judge Jules, Lisa Lashes and Sub Focus.

He’s come a long way since starting out his DJ journey in his bedroom eight years ago.

Ben has played the local circuits in Swansea, along with appearing in Bristol and, most recently, in Prague.

“It started out as just a hobby after watching major festivals like Tomorrowland, Ultra Music festival and UK festivals such as Creamfields and Boomtown online,” he said.

Advertisement

“Music has always been my passion so it inspired me to give it a go and just mess around with songs at home.

“A few years later I was fortunate to get an opportunity with a local music company called HEFT. Following two other shows with them I was asked to play regularly and I haven’t looked back.”

As the big day draws nearer, Ben will be mixing his records with his day job in Singleton Assessment Unit.

Ben at his day job, behind the reception desk at Singleton Hospital (Image: Swansea Bay NHS)

He’s been part of the SAU reception team since February, and has received a lot of support from his colleagues.

He said: “I am one of six receptionists in a busy department. The team is like a little family, and they’re really happy that I’ve got the opening slot.

“As a team we book patients in to the unit on arrival as well as looking after inpatient files and records.

Advertisement

“I joined because I wanted something challenging and where every day is different – SAU certainly checks those boxes.”

And as for his music collection for Saturday, he’s close to finalising his 45-minute set, which is predominantly drum and bass.

“There are a lot of feel-good summery tracks in my set and few other extras in there as well,” he said.

“I’ve got some tracks from artists such as Wilkinson, Kanine and High Contrast just to name a few – I’m really happy with what I’ve got planned.

“Hopefully the crowd will like the set and I’ll get a good reaction.”

Advertisement

(Lead image: Swansea Bay NHS)

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Trending

Copyright © 2021 Swansea Bay News