The Older People’s Commissioner for Wales has praised an organisation that is supporting the families of ex-miners across the South Wales Valleys, following a visit to Newbridge.
In total, CISWO now runs 15 clubs in former South Wales coalfield areas, which give members a chance to socialise with other women whose loved ones worked underground, as well as providing support, advice on a variety of issues and regular excursions.
Most coal mines in the Islwyn area closed down more than 20 years ago, but CISWO’s Newbridge group aims to bring as many former workers and their family members together. It was set up in September 2008 and meets every other Friday from 2pm to 4pm, while there is also a group in Fleur-de-Lys.
Ms Rochira said: “While some younger people will have no memories of the coalmines operating across South Wales, for many older people, the pits played a hugely significant role in their lives and their closure had a massive impact.
“They were often the glue that held communities together, with social clubs, events and excursions for workers and families consolidating the strong bonds that were created among those that worked underground together. Wonderful work by CISWO is helping to fill the voids left in some communities and provide opportunities for older people to remain close and to form new friendships.”
If you, your wife, husband or partner worked in any department of the coal industry, or if you are a dependent child of a former coal mining employee and would like more information about CISWO’s services or social groups, visit www.minerswelfare.org or contact Phil Williams on 01443 485233 or firstname.lastname@example.org..