Care & Repair Cymru has won a major national award for its work helping vulnerable older people and people with disabilities to live independently in their own homes.

The award judges were particularly impressed by the work the charity does to help older people return home from hospital without delays and to avoid readmission to hospital due to poor quality housing, thereby reducing pressure on local NHS services.

Following a rigorous selection and assessment process, Care & Repair Cymru (CRC) was chosen from more than 500 charities across the UK as one of the 10 winners of the 2024 GSK IMPACT Awards which are delivered in partnership with The King’s Fund. Now in its 27th year, the awards are a mark of excellence in the charity sector, designed to recognise the outstanding work of small and medium-sized charities working to improve people’s health and wellbeing in the UK.

As an award winner, Care & Repair Cymru will now receive £40,000 in unrestricted funding as well as expert support and leadership development provided by leading health and care charity The King’s Fund.

Research shows that where people live has a profound impact on their health and wellbeing. Founded in 1991, Care & Repair Cymru’s work includes supporting hospital discharge and preventing admission to hospital by improving and adapting the homes of those at risk. Their services are holistic, person-centred and tailored to individual needs.

In Wales, 85% of older people own their own home, and as they grow older, mst want to remain living in their own homes and communities. Wales has the oldest housing stock in the UK, with just over a quarter of all housing built before 1919. Poor quality or unsafe housing leads to an increased risk of falls, with 50% of people aged 80 and over falling at least once a year. The last housing conditions survey in 2018 showed that nearly one in five homes poses a risk to human health, with excess cold, damp and mould costing the Welsh NHS more than £95 million a year. A third of excess winter deaths among older people are attributed to respiratory illness from living in cold homes.

Care & Repair Cymru is the national body, supporting the work of 13 Care & Repair agencies covering all 22 counties in Wales. Its Managing Better programme targets some of Wales’s most vulnerable older people. This free service delivered by the agencies enables someone living with dementia, sensory loss or who has had a stroke to obtain a home check from a specially trained caseworker. The service user is offered advice on technology that might assist their independence, provided with guidance on how to reduce their risk of falls, and given information on what benefits they are entitled to, and enables them to access other services they may need. In 2022/23 the Managing Better programme helped 2,757 vulnerable older people and is delivered in partnership with sight and hearing impairment charities, as well as Stroke Association and Alzheimer’s Society Cymru.

The award judges commended Care & Repair Cymru for developing and managing the Hospital to a Healthier Home programme which aims to reduce delayed discharge from hospital and readmission rates. Care & Repair agencies work with NHS staff in hospitals to identify patients who might be prevented from leaving because they are living in unsuitable housing. Care & Repair staff step in to make the necessary adaptations quickly and free of charge so that patients can be discharged safely and in a timely manner. Care & Repair Cymru estimates this programme has more than halved hospital readmission rates and saved the Welsh NHS £13.6 million in delayed discharges in its first three years, including through saving an estimated 25,968 bed days.

The judges also noted the charity’s work to represent the needs of Welsh homeowners and highlight the impact of poor housing on older people’s health. By gathering and presenting data, CRC supports the Welsh government to make evidence-based policy improvements and is currently supporting moves towards a new right to affordable and adequate housing.

Data collected by the charity shows that in 2022/23 the 13 Care & Repair agencies, supported by Care & Repair Cymru, delivered 62,607 individual services to support independent living at home. The agencies undertook £18.3m of housing repair and improvement work, completed 20,438 adaptations, and secured £9.5m of unclaimed benefits for their service users.

Katie Pinnock, Director, UK Charitable Partnerships at GSK, said:

“Housing is often the missing piece of the puzzle for improving people’s health and keeping them out of hospital. Care & Repair Cymru champions the housing needs of older people, seeks increased investment to improve older people’s housing, and provides independence to those who want to stay in their own homes. The charity demonstrates excellent partnership working and is a strong and influential voice in housing policy. The programmes delivered by the charity and its agencies, such as Hospital to a Healthier Home and Managing Better, are effective innovations that also help to reduce the demand on overstretched NHS and social care services by supporting some of Wales’s most vulnerable people to live well in their own homes.”

Commenting on the award, Chris Jones, CEO of Care & Repair Cymru, said:

“We are thrilled to receive this award, which recognises the tireless efforts of Care & Repair staff right across Wales. We believe healthy ageing begins with healthy homes, that’s why we are speaking up for older people in Wales and working hard to adapt, repair and improve the homes of those who are most vulnerable. Thank you to GSK and The Kings Fund for recognising this vital work that supports thousands of older people each year and eases the pressure on NHS services.”



Notes to editors

Photos, interviews and case studies are available upon request. For further information please contact Gemma Umali, Senior Press and Public Affairs Manager at The King’s Fund, on 020 7307 2585 or



  • The GSK IMPACT Awards, run in partnership with The King’s Fund, are designed to recognise the outstanding work of community-based health care charities. For more information visit
  • The awards are open to small and medium-sized charities working in health and wellbeing with an annual income between £150,000 and £3 million that are at least three years old. The 2025 GSK IMPACT Awards will open for applications on 1 July 2024. For more information and to apply visit
  • This year £430,000 in unrestricted prize money will be awarded to UK charities through the GSK IMPACT Awards. Five runners-up will receive £4,000 each. Ten winners will each receive £40,000 in unrestricted funding, film assets, a set of promotional photographs of their services, as well as access to training and development activities estimated to be worth £9,500. At the award ceremony at The King’s Fund in London on 16 May 2024, an overall winner will be announced and they will receive an extra £10,000, making a total of £50,000. The ten winning charities are also invited to join the GSK IMPACT Awards Network, a UK-wide network of almost 120 previous award winners who work together to develop leaders, find new ways of working and provide mutual support.
  • The 2024 winners went through a rigorous assessment, including a half-day in-depth discussion with an independent assessor, and were selected by a judging panel of health and charity experts.
  • Since its inception in 1997, over 540 health and wellbeing charities have received a GSK IMPACT Award and funding totalling more than £8.5 million.

GSK is a global biopharma company with a purpose to unite science, technology and talent to get ahead of disease together. Find out more at

The King’s Fund is an independent charity working to improve health and care in England. It helps to shape policy and practice through research and analysis; developing individuals, teams, and organisations; promoting understanding of the health and social care system; and bringing people together to learn, share knowledge and debate. Its vision is that the best possible health and care is available to all. For further information visit

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