You may be aware that the Ministerial announcement in December on the Welsh Government’s Budget for 2014-15 included proposals to establish an Intermediate Care Fund. The Fund is to  be used to encourage collaborative working between social services, health and housing, to support people to maintain their independence and remain in their own home through the improved planning and provision of more integrated services. It will be used to avoid unnecessary hospital admissions, or inappropriate admission to residential care, as well as preventing delayed discharges from hospital.

Local Authorities will lead on the development of proposals, working in partnership with health, housing and the Third and independent sectors. The expectation is that a wide range of partners, including the Third Sector, Registered Social Landlords and Care and Repair agencies will be involved in the delivery.

For more information on the fund and its aims and objectives, please download the Intermediate Care Fund Guidance here.

Cardiff Council is taking the lead on developing a proposal for Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan in February 2014 for submission to the Welsh Government by the 7th March submission date.

If you would like to propose any ideas or feedback, please contact Sheila Hendrickson Brown, Chief Officer of C3SC, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Helping trustees tackle challenges and prevent problems at their charities charitycommission

The Charity Commission, the regulator of charities in England and Wales, has published two new audio podcasts, designed to help charity trustees understand their duties under charity law.

Here are the titles of the two podcasts:


Find out more on the Charity Commission website.

South Wales Fire and Rescue Service and Cardiff’s Regulatory Services are warning those who use E-Cigarettes not to leave these products unattended when charging.

Crews from South Wales Fire and Rescue Service have recently attended two separate fires when the batteries from the E-Cigarette have exploded, travelled up to 2 metres across the room before landing on a carpet and igniting. Luckily the occupiers were close at hand and the fires were very small and were quickly extinguished by on site staff. 

Group Manager, Phil Pinches said, “Research has shown that a number of incidents have occurred across the UK in recent months and South Wales Fire and Rescue Service encourages users to read the advice given on the safety leaflet provided with these products to reduce the risk of this happening”.

Cllr Ashley Govier, Cabinet Member for the Environment, at Cardiff Council said: “This news is very alarming and I will be asking Trading Standards officers to investigate the products which have caused these fires to ascertain whether they meet all the required standards.”


The following advice is given to consumers:



  • Ensure that you purchase these products from a reputable source.
  • Speak to a healthcare professional about the most appropriate and effective nicotine replacement therapy to help you reduce the harm caused by smoking, including gums, patches and mouth sprays.
  • Check the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) website for the latest advice on the regulation of e-cigarettes as Nicotine Containing Products (NCPs).
  • Keep an eye on the Electronic Cigarette Trade Industry Trade Association's website for the industry's response to increasing MHRA regulation.
  • Contact Trading Standards if you have any doubts about the safety of e-cigarettes being sold locally.
  • Test your smoke alarm regularly.



  • Assume that E-Cigarettes are the most effective or safest way to reduce harm caused by smoking.
  • Leave items on charge unattended for long periods if at all possible
  • Do not mix components of different E-Cigarettes along with an incorrectly rated charger.
  • Only use the charger supplied – never ‘mix and match’ and never over tighten a battery onto the charger.


Further information:

or visit

With the backing of the Welsh Government, the Axis All Areas toolkit has been established in response to an increase feedback regarding identifying and appropriately dealing withaxis the cultural issues faced surrounding substance misuse and alcohol.
NewLink Wales is proud to present this toolkit which will assist those working with individuals who experience issues with substance misuse.  The ethnic profile of the UK is rapidly changing and we must ensure that services and interventions are delivered in a culturally appropriate manner to maximise their effectiveness. This means that the practice of substance misuse workers, counsellors, support workers, volunteers, health professionals and related partners should be adapted to accommodate the cultural needs of the people we serve. 
This toolkit contains guidance and psychosocial interventions tools for assessing cultural needs, exploring key issues and understanding substance misuse within a variety of cultural contexts. This is not intended to offer a definitive collection of tools but rather to offer a starting point and a prompt to increase confidence when working with people from diverse groups.  Our intention is to provoke discussion and encourage divergent thinking about the things we often take for granted. From this, the practitioner and the service user can meaningfully explore their cultural compatibility and be open about how cultural needs can be fully met.

The main aims of the toolkit are: 

  • To encourage culturally appropriate practice throughout the substance misuse sector.
  • To empower practitioners to assess and work with those who have cultural needs.
  • To ensure equality of access to meaningful interventions for all service users.
  • To ensure that stereotypes are challenged and that diversity is fully embraced.
  • To help service users to explore the cultural implications of substance misuse and what this means for their recovery.
  • To explore the cultural compatibility of a service user and their worker – setting boundaries and expectations early on in the relationship.
  • Assist practitioners in confronting their own biases and raise awareness of their own cultural identity.
  • To ultimately promote long term recovery from substance misuse.


The dates and venues for upcoming FREE toolkit training days that are due to take place in your area:
Newport - Wednesday 5th March
Cardiff - Friday 7th March
Merthyr - Monday 10th March
Swansea - Wednesday 12th March
Cardiff - Monday 17th March       


There are a limited number of spaces for these events. Email Sarah Bellamy at NewLink Wales at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or telephone her on (029) 2052 9002 to reserve your place.

From 6 April employers will be eligible for up to £2000 allowance towards their total employer’s national insurance contribution for 2014-15. So how much will you be able to claim?

Read the rest of this article on the WCVA website.