A DENBIGH organisation that helps people struggling with loneliness or poor self-confidence to make new friends and improve their life skills has celebrated its annual awards ceremony.

Cynnig held its eighth Activity Celebration at Theatre Twm O’r Nant, Denbigh on January 25 to showcase the achievements of its members in 2018.

The not-for-profit organisation, which helps adults with complex needs such as learning disabilities or mental health difficulties, organises trips such as walks and day trips, story writing, cookery, arts and crafts, computing, music and drama, fishing and metal detecting aimed at improving physical and mental wellbeing.

The awards ceremony was well attended by family friends and colleagues, as well as Denbighshire County Council’s Chair, Cllr Peter Scott and the Mayor of Denbigh, Cllr Catherine Jones, who heard about the achievements and hard-work of individuals across Denbighshire.

Amongst the winners were Hywel Hughes of Ruthin for Performer of the Year and John Wood of St Asaph for Artist of the Year, while an achievement award was also presented to Geraint Davies of Trefnant, for a 100 per cent attendance record on the Cynnig walks in which he covered 16 miles over the year.

Female Achiever of the Year was Hillary Ratcliffe of Denbigh for showing outstanding resilience and independence after taking the skills she has learned at Cynnig to improve her life. For example, Hilary has recreated recipes at home that she learned through the Cynnig cookery classes and, by being a regular on Cynnig’s weekend walks and day trips, she has forged new friendships with other members of the group.

Male Achiever of the Year award was Stuart Nield-Siddall of Rhyl, who was nominated by his brother Duncan after overcoming various difficult challenges to successfully live independently and immerse himself into a variety of positive opportunities.

A Cynnig spokesperson said: “At Cynnig, we believe it is important to recognise and celebrate the importance of our participant’s achievements. This not only encourages participants but shows them that their achievements have been noticed and rewarded.

“Cynnig’s ethos is all about helping individuals to achieve their potential. Participants gain greater levels of confidence and independence and are able to interact more fully in their local community.”

This year’s winners were able to take the skills learned with us and use them to enhance their lives away from the Cynnig environment. They demonstrated the desire to live life to the full and take the opportunities presented to them. Social networks formed through Cynnig Activities were continued away from the Cynnig environment adding an extra layer of resilience.”