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Snapchat safety film wins prize in Cardiff Bay

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(L-R) Kirsty Williams AC and Cabinet Secretary for Education, Owain Gruffydd, Eluned Owen, Anest Eirug, Siôn Hurford, (pupils from Ysgol Gyfun Gymunedol Penweddig) receiving their award for the Safer Internet Day 2018 competition in Cardiff Bay.

A SHORT film created by Year 12 Ysgol Gyfun Gymunedol Penweddig drama pupils has won second prize in a nationwide competition. The short film focuses on raising awareness of online safety among young people, particularly highlighting and prompting discussions of the risks surrounding the misuse of Snapchat. The project was facilitated by the Ceredigion Youth Service, in conjunction with Aberystwyth University and Ysgol Gyfun Gymunedol Penweddig.

The film was entered into the Welsh Government’s Safer Internet Day 2018 competition. This year’s theme was ‘Create, connect and share respect’. The competition asked children and young people to explore and express how being online makes them feel through word, film, music or art.

Following a thorough judging process, the film was shortlisted as a finalist. The group was invited to attend the Safer Internet Day 2018 event hosted by the Welsh Government, South West Grid for Learning and UK Safer Internet Centre at the Pierhead, Cardiff Bay on Tuesday 6 February 2018. Ceredigion’s short film came second in the competition’s Secondary category, chosen from 300 entries across Wales. The award was presented to the pupils by Kirsty Williams AM, Cabinet Secretary for Education, and will be on display at Ysgol Gyfun Gymunedol Penweddig.

Councillor Catrin Miles, Cabinet Member with responsibility for Learning Services said, “On behalf of the Council, I commend the hard work undertaken by the pupils from Ysgol Gyfun Gymunedol Penweddig who were part of this film right from the beginning, discussing ideas, writing the plot, to the final part of acting in, filming and editing the final film. The film was chosen as one of the competition’s finalist entries from 300 applications across Wales. I am incredibly pleased to hear that the film was awarded the second prize in the annual Safer Internet Day competition. This is great recognition for the young people’s achievement in creating such a successful resources, which will benefit others across the county. Thank you to Ceredigion Youth Service, Ysgol Gyfun Gymunedol Penweddig and Aberystwyth University for supporting the pupils to create this film”.

Siôn Hurford, a Ysgol Gyfun Gymunedol Penweddig pupil involved in creating and producing the short film said, “It is really important that we educate and raise awareness of the dangers surrounding the misuse of different social media platforms. For this film, we decided to focus on snapchat safety, with the app being very popular amongst young people. The film portrays various dangers and the negative effects that can arise from misusing social media apps, such as cyber bullying, peer pressure and the sharing of unsuitable images. We hope this film will be used to highlight these issues and to prompt open and honest discussions around cyber safety in schools and colleges across Ceredigion”.

The film was designed to be used as an educational resource within secondary schools, Hyfforddiant Ceredigion Training and Coleg Ceredigion. A DVD of the film, free of charge to these establishments, is available from Ceredigion Youth Service, by contacting Lowri Evans on 01545 572 352 or lowri.evans@ceredigion.gov.uk.

To find out more information about the event or for online safety tips, advice and resources to help children and young people stay safe online, visit https://www.saferinternet.org.uk/.

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Aberystwyth waste pilot launched

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AN innovative pilot scheme has been launched in North Parade, Aberystwyth to help promote positive waste behaviours in the town centre.

The initiative sees communal wheelie bins being delivered to the pilot area on the afternoon before the usual scheduled waste collections. The bins provide a means of containing the waste for the time between it being presented and being collected. Protecting the waste from attack by animals, including seagulls, will help keep the town centre’s streets clean.

The new approach will also help support more local residents, especially those living in properties where space to store waste is limited, to make full use of the weekly recycling and food waste collection services. Reducing the amount of recyclable waste that goes into black bags is not only better for the environment but it also helps ensure it is dealt with in the most efficient and cost-effective way possible.

The days and frequency of waste collections will remain the same with wheelie bins being provided each week for clear recycling bags and food waste and fortnightly for black bags. Waste should be presented in the correct wheelie bin by 8am on the day collection.

Once the waste is collected the wheelie bins are removed which avoids problems that would arise if they were left there permanently which includes causing unnecessary street clutter and obstructions as well as potentially being misused and attracting fly-tipping.

Councillor Dafydd Edwards, the Cabinet member responsible for Highways and Environmental Services, said: “I am fully supportive of this initiative. It is an example of the Council working in partnership with communities on resolving issues. I wish the initiative every success and look forward in the future, to further working closely with our communities on finding creative solutions to the issues we are all concerned about.”

The scheme started on August 6-7. If it proves to be successful, consideration will be given to extending the pilot to other areas where it may work. Consideration is also being given to other ways of further supporting positive waste behaviours in Aberystwyth and Ceredigion in general ahead of a new domestic waste collection system that will be introduced in 2019.

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Consultation on future of gas network for west Wales enters final week

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PEOPLE from west Wales are being urged to have their say as a public consultation on the future of the local gas network is set to close on Friday (Aug 17).

Wales & West Utilities look after the pipes that bring gas to homes and businesses across Wales and the south west of England. The company has received almost 20,000 responses to its consultation but is now urging as many people as possible to take two minutes to pipe up and shape its plans for the future. Everyone who completes the consultation will be entered into a weekly draw to win a £100 Amazon Gift Card.

The company is asking people to give their views on issues such as the gas emergency service, investment to keep the gas network safe and reliable and how it supports those most in need. It is also seeking views on preparing the gas network for a greener future, making sure it can continue to deliver essential services for generations to come.

Wales & West Utilities charge for their services through consumer gas bills. Currently, their services make up 20% of an annual gas bill – so for the average gas bill of £630, that’s £128 a year – or 35 pence per day.

Graham Edwards, Chief Executive at Wales & West Utilities, explains: “The pipes we look after are mostly underground and out of mind, but we provide an essential service in keeping people safe and warm in their homes and powering businesses. Now, as we plan for the future, we want as many people in West Wales as possible to have their say on the future of their gas network and the services we provide.”

“This consultation is about ensuring our customers’ views are heard so that we plan and work towards getting the balance right between investing to maintain and improve our services and preparing the gas network for the future, while keeping bills low.

“We understand the financial pressure households across the area are under and we remain committed to keeping our portion of the gas bill to a minimum – we have already reduced the cost of our services since 2013 from £145 to £128 today.

“We’re looking forward to hearing customer feedback from West Wales as this will play a vital role in shaping our business for the future.”

Wales & West Utilities also connects around 11,000 homes and businesses to the network each year. And, for customers in need of extra support, the company has a scheme offering low-cost gas connections and financial help for appliance repairs. There is also a priority register to make sure people in vulnerable situations are prioritised when things go wrong.

To have your say on the future of your gas network and the services Wales & West Utilities provides please go to PipeUpOnline.co.uk or Facebook.com/wwutilities and be in with a chance to win a £100 Amazon.co.uk Gift Card.

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Elin Jones welcomed to Gorsedd as ‘Elin Ceredigion’

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AT THIS year’s National Eisteddfod, held in Cardiff Bay, Elin Jones, AM for Ceredigion, was welcomed into the Gorsedd.

The ceremony of the Gorsedd of the Bards is an integral part of the National Eisteddfod, and honours people who have made a significant contribution to the Welsh language and to Wales. Upon being admitted to the Gorsedd, the member is able to choose their ‘Bardic name’. Elin Jones has chosen to be known as Elin Ceredigion.

Elin Jones said: “It’s an honour to be admitted to the Gorsedd at this year’s National Eisteddfod, and to be known there as Elin Ceredigion.

“This was a very different and diverse National Eisteddfod. People from all over Wales and from many different cultures were able to see the Welsh Language thriving.

“The National Eisteddfod is important in whichever part of Wales it may be held. In two years’ time, it will be in Tregaron in Ceredigion which will be equally as exciting and important an Eisteddfod.

“The Gorsedd will next meet in Ceredigion in July 2019 – to proclaim the 2020 Ceredigion Eisteddfod.”

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