On 5 August our team helped staff the joint PAVO and Wales Council for Voluntary Action (WCVA) stand at the National Eisteddfod of Wales which this year was hosted by the village of Meifod in North Powys. For readers who have yet to visit the annual Eisteddfod Festival, it is described as:
“Uchafbwynt calendr diwylliannol Cymru, sy’n teithio o le i le, sy’n ymweld â’r Gogledd a’r De bob yn ail, a thrwy hynny’n rhoi cyfle i gymunedau ar draws y wlad groesawu hyd at 160,000 o ymwelwyr dros gyfnod o wyth niwrnod.”
“The pinnacle of the Welsh cultural calendar, it travels from place to place, alternating between north and south Wales, giving communities across the country a chance to welcome up to 160,000 visitors over an eight day period.”
|Chwith i dde: Freda Lacey (PAVO), Gill Colerick (Hafal), Glynis Luke a Lisa Banfield (PAVO).|
L - R Freda Lacey (PAVO), Gill Colerick (Hafal), Glynis Luke & Lisa Banfield (PAVO).
The Eisteddfod’s main aim is to promote the Welsh language and Welsh culture. Luckily our English-speaking team had the support of Lisa Banfield on the day we attended – she works in our Finance Department and is a keen Welsh learner. When you arrive at the valley where the Eisteddfod is hosted you find the Maes – which means “field” in Welsh and is where visitors are drawn to explore numerous marquees and stalls packed with activities, including the Eisteddfod’s iconic pink pavilion. Do check out some brilliant photographs on the Eisteddfod’s own website which give more than a flavour of the festival.
Penderfynodd PAVO gael themâu ar gyfer dyddiau gwahanol yr Eisteddfod ac estynnwyd croeso i grwpiau gwirfoddol eraill ar draws y sir i ymuno â ni er mwyn hyrwyddo eu gweithgareddau i gynulleidfa ehangach. 5 Awst oedd y Diwrnod Iechyd a Llesiant a chawsom gwmni Cymdeithas Ponthafren, Hafal, Ymddiriedolaeth Bracken a’r Gronfa Loteri Fawr.
|Jan Rogers, (Ymddiriedolwr – Cymdeithas Ponthafren), Rhian Davies (Prosiect YAPS, Cymdeithas Ponthafren)|
Jan Rogers, (Trustee - Ponthafren Association), Rhian Davies (YAPS project, Ponthafren Association)
Visitors could join Ponthafren Association trustee Jan Rogers, and public relations group rep Ken Davies, to make wind chimes from recycled knives, forks, spoons, jewellery and driftwood. They and colleague Rhian Davies, who works for the Young Adult Peer Support Project at Ponthafren, also provided information about the varied and much valued services provided by this mental health charity in North Powys.
Daeth Gill Colerick, Swyddog Cefnogi Teuluoedd Powys gyda Hafal yr elusen iechyd meddwl i’r maes hefyd, ar ôl treulio Wythnos yn Sioe Frenhinol Cymru lle bu’n cefnogi’r Ymgyrch ‘ Gyda’n Gilydd Nawr!’. Mae’r ymgyrch yn teithio ar hyd a lled Cymru yn ystod yr Haf eleni, i fynd i’r afael â gwarthnod a phroblemau iechyd meddwl trwy gerddoriaeth.
Gill Colerick, Powys Family Support Officer with the mental health charity Hafal, was straight from her week at the Royal Welsh show where she joined the All Together Now! Campaign. This is travelling the length and breadth of Wales this summer, tackling stigma and mental health issues through the power of music.
Ac ar stondin Ymddiriedolaeth Bracken roedd y nyrs Helen Davies yn rhoi profion pwysedd gwaed am ddim - profiad gwerth chweil yn yr Eisteddfod oedd mor hamddenol ei natur. Mae Ymddiriedolaeth Bracken, a leolir yn Llandrindod, yn cefnogi pobl yng Nghanolbarth Cymru i “fyw gyda, trwy a thu hwnt i ganser trwy ddod â chymorth proffesiynol a chymunedau cymorth at ei gilydd a thrwy greu canolfan eithriadol i gynnig gofal canser.”
Daeth aelodau tîm Cyfathrebu’r Gronfa Loteri Fawr atom am y diwrnod hefyd. Ar hyn o bryd, maen nhw’n datblygu rhaglen cyllid newydd ar gyfer cefn gwlad, ac roeddynt yn awyddus i glywed barn y bobl.
The Big Lottery Fund Wales’s Communication team also joined us for the day. They are currently developing a new rural funding programme and were keen to hear people’s views.
|Rosie Dent, Swyddog Cysylltiadau’r Gronfa Loteri Fawr yn gosod ei rhuban cochRosie Dent, Communications Officer at Big Lottery Fund Wales, pins her red volunteering ribbon|
Visitors to the PAVO stand were particularly interested to find out more about volunteering opportunities in Powys. And once we’d had a chat we asked some of them to pin a ribbon on our map of the UK to flag up their current volunteering status – red: I am already volunteering, green: I would like to volunteer, and white: I may wish to in the future. By the middle of the week Powys was already ablaze with red ribbons - a small symbol of a genuine success story – people really are volunteering like mad!
|Ken Davies, un o wirfoddolwyr Grŵp CC Cymdeithas Ponthafren, gyda Choeden Ceiniogau Powys|
Ken Davies, volunteer with PR Group at Ponthafren Association, with the Powys Pennies Tree
|Jackie Newey (PAVO), Menna Reese (Bwrdd Iechyd addysgu Powys)|
Jackie Newey (PAVO), Menna Reese (Powys teaching Health Board)
During the day I caught up with Menna Reese who has worked with Powys teaching Health Board’s mental health team on various projects. Of late she has been much involved in the development of the Mastermind computerised Cognitive Behavioural Therapy project, which she and her colleagues originally wrote about last summer. Menna told me that over 100 people in Powys had now signed up to the online Beating the Blues therapy. She has promised a more detailed update for this blog – so watch this space!
|Lesley Griffiths (canol) y Gweinidog dros Gymunedau a Threchu Tlodi yn lansio Polisi Gwirfoddoli Llywodraeth Cymru|
Lesley Griffiths (centre) Minister for Communities & Tackling Poverty, launched the Welsh Government Volunteer Policy
Our PAVO-WCVA stand was also the venue for several important project launches and initiatives over the course of the week. During our day we watched two key speeches from Welsh Government Ministers and their chosen guest speakers. Most of the speeches were made in Welsh, but translation facilities were available for anyone who required them.
Lesley Griffiths, Gweinidog Llywodraeth Cymru dros Gymunedau a Threchu Tlodi, oedd yn lansio Polisi Gwirfoddoli newydd LlC, gyda’r is-bennawd: “Rydym yn cydnabod cyfraniad enfawr y Trydydd Sector i fywyd yng Nghymru”. Bu Elan, gwirfoddolwr ifanc, yn trafod ei phrofiad fel hyfforddwr chwaraeon gyda’r Urdd, ac wedyn bu Carwyn yn trafod ei rôl fel gwirfoddolwr gyda Pride Gogledd Cymru.
Lesley Griffiths, Welsh Government Minister for Communities & Tackling Poverty, launched the new Welsh Government Volunteer Policy, with the strapline: “We recognise the huge contribution made by the Third Sector to life in Wales”. Young volunteer Elan talked about her experience as an Urdd sports coach, whilst Carwyn from North Wales Pride spoke about his volunteering role.
|Mark Drakeford, Gweinidog Llywodraeth Cymru dros Iechyd a Gwasanaethau Cymdeithasol fu’n rhoi anerchiad blynyddol ar Blant yng Nghymru|
Mark Drakeford, Welsh Government Minister for Health & Social Services, made the annual Children in Wales speech
Later in the afternoon Mark Drakeford, Welsh Government Minister for Health & Social Services, gave the annual Children in Wales lecture on his chosen topic of looked after children, followed by questions from the audience.
Glynis Luke (PAVO) gyda chyfaill o Sefydliad Prydeinig y Galon
Glynis Luke (PAVO) with friend from the British Heart Foundation
All in all it was a very full day, with lots happening, and, as everyone we met commented, one of the friendliest atmospheres we have come across at a large event or festival like this.