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Volunteering champ Sam keeps his feet on the ground

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Young achiever: Sam at the awards ceremony with his family.

Young achiever: Sam at the awards ceremony with his family.

HE may be the winner of Radio Pembrokeshire’s Volunteering Award but young Sam Davies has his feet well and truly on the ground. He is keen to attribute so much of his success to the St John’s Ambulance Service he has come to love and serve. 17 year-old Sam, who is currently a pupil at Pembroke School, hopes to join the Navy as a student nurse and is convinced that his volunteer work with St John’s is a marvellous stepping stone to success on that journey. “Medicine makes me tick” he says “which is why I first got involved with St John’s. I’ve always had a keen interest in and passion for the emergency services and their work confirmed to me that I want to work on the caring side of things. It is an amazing organisation.

They protect and take care of me as well as train me. I really do feel part of a family.” According to Sam the local division currently has some 15 cadets and a similar number of adults but things were not as healthy a few years ago when he first joined. He explained: “I was nominated by the Divisional Officer Victoria Stevens. There was a time when we were down to three members and she feels that I have done so much to get things off the ground by promoting it especially in school. We are so much stronger now and she has said she could not have done it without me.

She is delighted with what is happening and we seem to be getting so much better known locally which is good.” In nominating Sam Divisional Office Stevens wrote: “He was very quiet at first, but started training in First Aid skills, absorbing the skills and information like a sponge. By the time our busy season for duties started, he was a qualified First aider looking forward to helping his community. In that first season, he completed 234 duty hours and assisted dozens of sick and injured people in Pembrokeshire.He also noted that as a small division we needed help with fundraising.

That year he raised over £600 by doing bag packs in Asda and Tesco. He has performed duties at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, at the National Eisteddfod in Llanelli and regularly helps out at Parc Y Scarlets. He has travelled to Hungary with other cadets from St John Cymru to take part in First Aid simulations and competitions, where he was also roped into teaching local people First Aid there!’’

Sam is nothing if not an enthusiastic supporter of St John’s. “It has been amazing” he continued. “I go to meetings twice a week for training and personal development and then get to work with them over weekends. The amount will depend on the events and the season. We have great fun and all this has allowed me to gain lots of qualifications in youth leadership and personal development as well as first aid.” Sam has had already had a varied experience of health and emergency issues but he has also discovered the importance of sensitivity and compassion: “I have to admit that I have been surprised to see just how important the social side of the work is – comforting and consoling people in the hour of need” he explained.

“It really helps if you are a good talker. I’ve discovered just how important it is to deal with people as people and not just as statistics or numbers.” And through his encounters with role models such as Divisional Office Stevens, Sam Davies has come to see that he could be a link in an inspirational chain too: “My nomination came as a big surprise” he observed. “I had asked Victoria to nominate someone else but she told me that they already had someone in mind. I didn’t exactly guess but I had a suspicion it was me and I hoped I was wrong because I hate being embarrassed and fight shy of the limelight.

I was a bit gobsmacked when my mum told me and I really did not know what to say. But this has given me a big boost and has shown me that if you get stuck into something you can really achieve something. I would really encourage other young people to find something they can enjoy and get stuck into instead of being sat at home doing nothing it’s far better being out there doing something worthwhile I’ve seen the difference it can make when people come up and thank you. You meet so many inspiring people and you simply want to follow them in being an example.”

Divisional Officer Stevens would clearly agree given her nomination. Sam, she wrote: “Has now qualified as a Cadet Trainer – passing on his skills to the other cadets. I have watched him grow from a quiet, shy boy to a confident, self-assured young man who is always willing to assist others, putting them first before himself. I am nominating him for the volunteering award as I firmly believe that he deserves recognition for himself and the things that he has achieved. He is a role model to other young people – a true inspiration.’’

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Community

The young can be recycling ambassadors for Pembrokeshire

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NESTLE WATERS UK, which has a plant in Narberth, Pembrokeshire, has launched R-Generation, a new education programme to equip primary and  secondary students with the skills to inspire positive change in their school community and beyond.


The R-Generation resources provide curriculum links to PSHE, Citizenship, Science and Geography, and  offer a whole-school approach to being more actively sustainable.


The resources for primary students include a range of interactive activities that can easily fit into day-to-day lesson planning such as an  assembly presentation, school launch guide and four workshops focused on key topics such as reusing,  recycling and being an active citizen.


The aim of the programme is to empower students to take recycling  into their own hands, by creating school surveys, interviews and analysis that help students better  understand what recycling means for their school and how they can build better habits for the future. To  make this a manageable goal for primary school students, the resources showcase simple tips on  understanding labels, checking your bins and knowing how to recycle in your local area.


The programme also offers resources for secondary students, which focus on creating a team of R Generation Ambassadors who create an Action Plan to make their school community more sustainable.


Through a series of workshops, students will learn how to lead by example, exploring other young  influential sustainability ambassadors to inspire their thinking. These R-Generation Ambassadors will then  create a 10-week sustainability plan for their school, featuring school recycling challenges and ideas about  how to include their wider school community of parents, councillors and local press to make a difference in  their local community.
Emma Barker, a teacher at Grampian Primary Academy in Derby, said: “The R-Generation programme has equipped my class  with important skills to be able to drive a lasting change within the school. It’s helped them to realise they  have a voice and are able to communicate their newfound knowledge about recycling and sustainability  with confidence. They are immensely proud of the projects they have implemented across the school, and  they have helped to inspire others to make small changes to help the environment.”


Hayley Lloyd House, Head of Sustainability at Nestlé Waters UK said: “Thinking beyond sustainability and  reducing our impact on the environment are at the heart of everything we do, and the world needs  everyone to take action and do their bit now, more than ever before. We hope to showcase the variety of simple actions children, schools and local  communities can take to create circularity in their organisations that can help reduce their impact. These  small changes can have an impact on a global scale and we can all be part of the change our planet needs  for tomorrow and the future.”


The R-Generation primary and secondary resource packs are now available to be downloaded for free at:  http://r-generation.co.uk/

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Community

Have your say to help improve well-being in Pembrokeshire

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The Well-being Assessment is a requirement set out in the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act.

PUBLIC feedback is being invited on an important document which aims to improve all aspects of well-being in Pembrokeshire.

The Draft Well-being Assessment for Pembrokeshire, produced by Pembrokeshire’s Public Services Board (PSB), is online now at: 

https://haveyoursay.pembrokeshire.gov.uk/assessment-of-local-well-being-2021

The Well-being Assessment is a requirement set out in the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act.

The Act requires key public and third sector organisations to create a PSB and work together to improve the economic, environmental, social and cultural well-being of its area and communities.

The Well-being Assessment looks at the key issues for people and communities in Pembrokeshire, across all aspects of well-being, through data, information sources and research, engagement with local people and stakeholders, and consideration of future trends.

The Well-being Assessment is a crucial step towards creating the next Well-being Plan by May 2023, which will enable the PSB to identify, prioritise and agree the objectives and actions to improve well-being in Pembrokeshire.

There are many issues which affect well-being such as inequalities in health and standards of living, population change, air pollution and flood risk, limited resources for social care, lack of housing, poverty, climate change and depletion of natural resources.

Members of the public are invited to read the draft document and provide feedback.

Changes will be made in response to the feedback where appropriate to improve the document.

Work will continue prior to approval of a final version in March 2022. The draft document and brief response form is be available at: 

https://haveyoursay.pembrokeshire.gov.uk/assessment-of-local-well-being-2021

Please make your responses by Monday, February 21.

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Community

Citizens sought to sit on Council’s Governance and Audit Committee

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Council Chamber

PEMBROKESHIRE County Council is looking for two citizens to sit as Lay Persons of its Governance & Audit Committee.

The committee’s work includes:

  • Reviewing and scrutinising the Authority’s financial affairs
  • Making reports and recommendations in relation to the Authority’s financial affairs
  • Reviewing and assessing the risk management, internal control, performance assessment and corporate governance arrangements of the Authority
  • Making reports and recommendations to the Council or to the relevant Committee on the adequacy and effectiveness of those arrangements
  • Plus several other functions

The successful applicants will be expected to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the value of the Audit function. They are also expected to demonstrate commitment to the values of accountability, probity, openness, independence, fairness and sound financial management in the public sector.

Citizens cannot become a Lay Member if they are:

  • A member or officer of any Local Authority
  • If they have in the period of 12 months ending with the date of appointment been a member or an officer of any Local Authority
  • If they are a spouse or civil partner of a member or officer of any Local Authority.

The appointment will be made by a panel of five individuals including an Independent Chairman, three Members of the Council and a Community Council Member.

An allowance will be payable for attendance at Governance & Audit Committee meetings.

The closing date for applications is 24 January 2022. Applications are welcomed from all sections of the community.

For a full description of the role and an application pack please contact

Jackie Thomas (tel: 01437 776292) or e-mail: JackieJ.Thomas@pembrokeshire.gov.uk

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