New Community Hub Opens at Paignton Library

Jack Watts manning the new Community Hub at Paignton Library
(Last Updated On: August 25, 2022)

Torbay residents looking for information on where to access local support can now have their queries answered face-to-face at a new community hub, launched this week at Paignton Library.

Residents living in Torbay seeking information about local services can visit the Community Hub, located on the ground floor of Paignton Library, next to both Paignton’s train and bus stations on Great Western Road.

The hub is being run by local non-profit community organisation Engaging Communities South West, in conjunction with the Torbay Community Helpline, run by Torbay Community Development Trust and for both people who need help and those who want to offer help. They are also working with key partners from the Torbay Health and Wellbeing Voluntary Sector Network, including Age UK, Citizen’s Advice Torbay, healthcare consumer champion Healthwatch Torbay, and many others. The service has been funded by a contribution from Torbay Council’s Adult Social Care precept.

Initially open from 9.30am – 1.30pm on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, members of the local community will be able to come in and speak to someone from the hub about queries relating to:
• Health and social care
• Caring for family and friends
• Access to local groups and activities
• Practical and IT support
• Finance and welfare benefits
• Housing
• Emotional wellbeing including bereavement and isolation
• Domestic abuse and sexual violence
• Other areas already supported via the Torbay Community Helpline (e.g. befriending)

Any member of the public needing help and information will be signposted to the most appropriate organisation that can help meet their needs. The new Community Hub also be able to offer these organisations interview space to meet any clients face to face.

“We’re delighted to be able to offer this information and signposting hub to the local community, and we’re looking forward to seeing people face-to-face again.” said Engaging Communities South West CEO Pat Harris, “With this new initiative we want to make it easier for Torbay residents to get the information they need. Getting people to the right place at the right time can make a huge difference to those who are experiencing a range of difficulties and may need some extra help and support.”

Councillor Jackie Stockman, Torbay Council Cabinet Member for Adults and Public Health, said: “We’re pleased we’ve been able to secure this funding from our Adult Social Care precept for such a vital service. There may be many people who need advice in the coming months as the cost of living crisis worsens and this hub will serve as a one-stop shop for them and for others needing advice on a range of issues.”

Councillor Christine Carter, Cabinet Member for Corporate and Community Services, said: “It’s great that after the last few years of services being offered remotely, people will be able to seek help in person again right at the heart of the community.”

The new Community Hub will not be in a position to deal directly with housing issues, but they can ensure people are signposted to the relevant support available.

If you are an organisation who would like to book an interview room to meet with a client or share any local community information via the Hub community noticeboards, please email jack.watts@ecsw.org.uk.

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