When would a person use the word родня? I know its literal meaning is relative but what does it loosely translate to in English in its contextual meaning?
Word родня does not just mean a relative - it refers to an extended group of relatives, essentially all and any people even remotely related to the person in question. A rather close English translation is extended family, however Russian родня has more of a connotation of familiarity. Quite often, it's used to describe the collection of all relatives, e.g. вся родня. For example:
Если вся моя родня будет ей не рада,
Не пеняйте на меня - я уйду из стада.
Another related word is родичи, which is colloquial form of родственники, meaning relatives.
EDIT: Following a comment from Andrey 'lolmaus' Mikhaylov, it's worth adding that word родня may also be used to indicate some (unqualified) relatives (e.g. "Провел выходные с родней") - yet it pretty much always used to refer to a plural relatives rather than one individual relative.
You can also say about your relatives/family/dear friends as "they are my Родные/ they are Родные to me". When not used in plural, You can say it as You'd say sweetheart/dear/dearest - "родная" (f) and "родной" (m). For example, 'my sweetheart/my dear' to a woman - "родная my/my родная".
Although, google would translate "native", as in native land/home land - "родная land". But we all know, google translator usually sucks when it comes to context.
I hope this helps.