Rob backs pal Kev in bid for Strictly crown

Written by on 16th July 2012. Posted in News

STRICTLY Swansea hopeful Kev Johns is leaving nothing to cha-cha-chance.

The broadcaster, writer and Swansea City announcer is preparing himself mentally and physically for when the Evening Post's dance spectacular is staged later this year.

SWEP article - Rob backs pal Kev in bid for strictly crownNow he has won star backing as he strives to be crowned Strictly champion — and raise money for his nominated charity as well.

Kev is patron of Treat Trust Wales, which aims to build an £18 million therapy centre in the grounds of Morriston Hospital.

And Treat patron Rob Brydon and president Michael Sheen have both sent him good-luck messages.

Rob said: "When I heard my fellow Treat patron Kev Johns is competing in Strictly Swansea I thought, 'He'll walk it…'.

"This is a worry. Kev, you'll have to dance it, walking won't be enough. Good luck!"

Michael added: "Good luck Kev! Always knew you had some twinkle in your toes.

"On behalf of everyone at Treat Trust Wales, thanks for bringing us a few quick-steps closer to our goals!"

Kev, who has had three dance sessions so far, said: "I'm really enjoying it but it is hard trying to remember all the steps."

Treat founder Melanie Davies said: "It's fantastic Kev is doing this for us. We'll be in Oceana on the night, cheering him on."

TREAT Trust Wales AGM on 10th July 2012

Written by on 9th July 2012. Posted in News

The TREAT Trust Wales AGM will be held at 6pm on Tuesday 10th July 2012 in the Burns & Plastics Sminar Room at Morriston Hospital.

Cappuccino Girls – What a TREAT

Written by on 31st May 2012. Posted in News

Last month saw TREAT Trust Wales head to the theatre when Mal Pope put on a special charity performance of his hit musical Cappuccino Girls.

Cappuccino Girls

With special thanks to Dragon Events, who worked with Mal Pope to arrange the evening, a wonderful night was had by all! As well as selling the tickets, a raffle was sold which was drawn by TREAT's vice-president Meyrick Sheen, and they even managed to sell some of Mel's book 'Never Say Die'.

Carrying the Olympic Flame

Written by on 13th May 2012. Posted in News

Melanie Davies, founder of TREAT Trust Wales, will be carrying the Olympic flame on Saturday, 26th May at approximately 6:14pm on St Helen's Road near Argyle Street to Bond Street.

Everyone is invited to come along to see Mel and show your support.

Paul Potts helps put charity in prime time spotlight

Written by on 8th May 2012. Posted in News

HE didn't quite make it to the jackpot — but appearing on Who Wants To Be a Millionaire? has helped Paul Potts raise awareness about a charity close to his heart.

The classical star, along with Swansea singer Shaheen Jafargholi, sat in the hotseat on the ITV show and managed to scoop £20,000.

They both took home £5,000 for their chosen charities, with the other £10,000 going to a member of the audience.

Paul, who lives in Port Talbot, raised the money for Treat Trust Wales, which is developing plans for a multi-million pound therapy centre in the grounds of Morriston Hospital.

Shaheen chose to support Teenage Cancer Trust.

Paul, who won Britain's Got Talent in 2007, said: "It was great fun and it was great to raise much needed funds for TREAT Trust Wales. I only wish it could have been more!

"It was also fantastic to give Treat nationwide attention in order to help it achieve its aims of providing world class care in Wales."

Melanie Davies, who set up the charity, said Paul had done more than enough to promote Treat Trust.

"It is a massive boost," she said. "The awareness on national television on a prime-time slot is the main thing.

"Paul was kicking himself about the question he stumbled upon. But it does not matter as he has raised so much awareness.

"I just love him, he is a star patron. He always comes through for us."

Mrs Davies and her husband Mike went to the recording of the special Britain's Got Talent edition of the show.

"It was absolutely nerve wracking sitting in the green room," said Mrs Davies. "But Paul was so cool. I am really proud of him."

Shaheen, 15, who reached the talent show final in 2009, said: "It was a bit scary."

Dance duo Twist and Pulse also took part in the show.


Lesa’s Marathon Pledge

Written by on 20th April 2012. Posted in News

RUNNER Lesa Hitchings will have to push through the pain barrier every step of the way on Sunday's London Marathon.

The 39-year-old from Baglan, who works in road safety with Swansea Council, suffers from two frozen shoulders and has diabetes.

Her shoulder problems means she cannot move her arms above her waist or behind her back. "I'm in a lot of pain whenever I run," said Lesa.

"I have been back and forth to hospital. In fact, two weeks after the marathon I'm due to have an operation on my shoulder."

Her diabetes has also affected her training but she is soldiering on.

Lesa, of Old Road, is raising money for Treat Trust Wales, which aims to develop a multi-million pound therapy centre in the grounds of Morriston Hospital.

"If there was a centre like that it would give people hope and give them something to aim for," said Lesa.

"They would be able to get help and rehabilitation.

"I think it's a really worthwhile cause."

Lesa is asking anyone willing to sponsor her to check out her Just Giving page. It can be found at Lesa-Hitchings

Melanie presents to Lions Clubs International

Written by on 26th March 2012. Posted in News

On March 17th Melanie was invited to speak to Lions Clubs International at the 37th District Convention held at the Newport Hilton Hotel.

DG Laurence (Lions Clubs International) making a presentation to Melanie.

DG Laurence making a presentation to Melanie

Lions Clubs are an international network of men and women who work together to answer the needs that challenge communities across the world. Find out more on their website:

Singer Paul is proud to be charity patron

Written by on 25th February 2012. Posted in News

SINGING star Paul Potts has proved again he is no mere figurehead when it comes to charity.

The Britain's Got Talent winner is a patron of Treat Trust Wales, which is aiming to develop an £18 million rehabilitation centre in the grounds of Morriston Hospital.

Now he has proved his hands-on credentials by travelling with Treat organisers and volunteers to Middlesex for a tour of the Aspire national training centre for people with spinal injuries.

Treat driving force Melanie Davies is from Paul's adopted town of Port Talbot but now lives near Pontardawe with her retired surgeon husband Mike.

"We told Paul about the trip and asked if he was around and he said "yes", his diary was free," said Melanie.

"He told us to pencil him in. Paul is very busy and so his diary changes all the time but at the start of this week he said he would come and asked us what time we wanted him there. He's just brilliant."

Mike, Melanie and Paul — along with volunteers Pippa Wafflart and Sian Jose — were due to be taken on the tour of the centre by Aspire's chief executive Brian Carling.

"Mike and I have been up there a few times, looking at the facilities they have," said Melanie, who broke her back in a motorbike accident while a 15-year-old schoolgirl more than 30 years ago.

"The Aspire centre is the template for what we want to do at Morriston. We're not reinventing the wheel and they are helping us.

"But it's important that our volunteers and Paul, as one of our main celebrity backers, see what it's all about. We will be taking more volunteers there."

A couple of years ago Paul boosted Treat by handing over £50,000, his fee for performing at a major tennis tournament.

He said then: "I support a lot of charities but I am now a patron of Treat and I feel very strongly that if you are a patron, you should do something rather than just be a name on a letterhead."

And Melanie said he was as good as his word. "Whenever he's around in the area he's always volunteering to do things.

"We really do appreciate how he gives up his time and shows interest and enthusiasm for Treat."


Doggy duo bringing joy to residents

Written by on 22nd February 2012. Posted in News

THINK of St Bernard dogs and the chances are you will picture them with little barrels of brandy saving lives on snowy slopes.

You're far less likely to imagine them making friends with the old folk in a residential care home.


Yet that is what's happening in a home in Pontardawe, where two gentle giants are brightening up the lives of residents with Alzheimer's disease.

Bruno and Rosie belong to Melanie Davies, the founder of Treat Trust Wales, whose mum Margaret lives at the Danybryn Residential Care Home in Brecon Road.

Every week Mel and husband Mike load up the dogs into the truck and drive them from their Gellinudd home to pay their regular visit.

"As a family we have always had dogs," said Melanie. "One day we had the two dogs with us and I mentioned to my mum that they were in the car park.

"My mother and the staff thought it would be nice if we could bring them in. As soon as my mum saw them she started smiling.

"All the other ladies in the unit really took to them too. They were thrilled.

"To see one St Bernard is unusual enough but when they saw two it really stimulated them.

"All of a sudden the ladies started asking questions — how old the dogs were, how much they weighed, how much they ate.

"It really brought them out of themselves and now we take the dogs there every week to see them."

Bruno weighs in at almost 13 stone while Rosie is 11.5 stone, but they're always on their best behaviour.

"They're really soft and gentle," said Melanie. "They go up to the ladies and give them kisses."

Manager Tracey Bennett said: "You can see the excitement and enjoyment whenever the dogs are here.

"One of the residents has even been on the floor, playing with them.

"It's really nice for the residents. It's so homely having a pet and we are grateful to Melanie and Mike for bringing them here."


Leaders help out charity’s quest to realise dream

Written by on 24th January 2012. Posted in News

A CHARITY has enlisted the support of two council big guns to help it realise its dream of building a multi- million pound therapy centre at Morriston Hospital.


Swansea Council leader Chris Holley and Neath Port Talbot Council chief executive Steve Phillips have agreed to assist Treat Trust Wales update its plans to increase its chances of getting the money for the £5 million first phase.

The charity is led by Melanie Davies, who broke her back in a motorbike accident 30 years ago when she was a 15-year-old schoolgirl in Port Talbot, and her former surgeon husband Mike.

Later in life Melanie had breast cancer and it was while recovering that she came up with the idea for Treat, which aims to offer rehabilitation for people from all walks of life.

Melanie, who now lives with Mike near Pontardawe, said: "We had a meeting with Chris and Steve and it was felt very strongly that Treat will not happen unless we have a robust business case and our feasibility study is updated.

"These were originally done eight years ago, and so much has changed since then — for example, at the time we were looking to build the centre on land in Port Talbot.

"The foundations are there but they need revising, and Chris and Steve offered to assist us in updating them.

"Any help they give will be welcome, because the business case is going to be the key to any funding requests, whether to the Welsh Government, Europe or elsewhere."

Although the cost of the centre has previously been estimated at £10 million, Treat says £18 million is now a more likely figure.

The charity's big-name supporters include the Baglan trio of Michael Sheen, Rob Brydon and Paul Potts.

Melanie said: "We love all our celebrity backers but their endorsements don't add weight to our business case."

She said the trust's first aim was to raise £2.5 million which, with match-funding, would allow it to develop the first phase of the building.

Mr Holley said: "Any charity like Treat Trust Wales, which will help people with disabilities, is well worth supporting.

"It's early days yet but I would like to congratulate ABM for making the land available at Morriston Hospital for the Treat building."

SOURCE: South Wales Evening Post, 24th January 2012

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