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Wildly unique Mother’s Day gifts

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MOTHER’S DAY is the perfect time to show your mum how much she means to you, and what better way to do that than to give her a uniquely wild gift and help your local Wildlife Trust at the same time!

The Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales have picked their top five wild gifts that any mum would love.

First up on the top five is a Wildlife Trust membership.

A spokesperson said: “ Your mum would be helping to protect local wildlife by enabling us to install nest boxes, manage local woodlands, survey red squirrels in mid Wales and carry out dolphin research, along with a mountain of other important conservation tasks. “

This is a gift that will keep on giving all year around for as little as a cup of coffee per month (or a one off payment if you prefer). By giving your mum a Wildlife Trust membership for mother’s day she could be giving a gift to wildlife throughout 2017 and even into 2018.

Second on the list of unique gifts for mother’s day are o the wildlife adoptions. The Trust have several wildlife species that are available for adoption including a badger, a puffin, a seal, a red squirrel and a hedgehog.

“Adopting one of these will help with various conservation tasks such as our work on Skomer and Skokholm Islands ensuring that the seal pup population is healthy, monitoring the red squirrels in mid Wales, promoting a Tuberculosis vaccine as a viable alternative to culling and campaigning for better legislation to protect and improve wildlife habitats throughout south and west Wales,” the Herald was told.

Your mum (if this is her first adoption) will receive an introductory letter, a personalised adoption certificate, a fact sheet and soft toy of her/your chosen wildlife species. Each year that she continues to adopt wildlife your mum will receive a report on how the species are doing in Wales (usually sent out in autumn). Adoptions are £25.

If your mum is a wildlife, nature and/ or outdoor enthusiast, the Trust have got just the place! Skomer Island is a haven for people who want to get up close and personal to Britain’s beautiful nature and take in some fresh air.

Voted Britain’s Favourite Nature Reserve of 2016 in the Landlove magazine awards , the island is home to an array of breath-taking seabirds.

The island opens in April and even though overnight stays are mostly fully booked now throughout May, June and July, you can still visit the island on a day trip to behold this natural phenomenon. You can then spend the day wondering the island and witnessing the thousands of seabirds in their colonies such as puffins, Manx shearwaters, guillemots and razorbills, spot tons of rabbits as well as marine wildlife from the cliffs.

If you were thinking more along the lines of an Island stay as a mother’s day gift don’t forget about Skomer’s sister Island; Skokholm. The beautiful mile long island is draped with red sandstone cliffs and offers a quieter experience with only approximately 17 people staying on the island at any one time.

In spring and summer , it is colonised by tens of thousands of nesting seabirds returning to their island home. By day there is frenetic activity among the puffins, razorbills, guillemots and gulls and by night there is a more vocal but equally hectic commotion from the Manx shearwaters and storm petrels. There are also often some fascinating migrants to look out for that are passing through.

And finally a stay in Oak Tree Cottage is sure to warm your mum’s heart this mother’s day! Off the beaten track, nestled in the heart of the beautiful Welsh Wildlife Centre & Teifi Marshes Nature Reserve, Pembrokeshire, you will find the newly refurbished Oak Tree Cottage or the ‘Cwtch’ as the Trust like to call it!

A brand new self-catering holiday let that’s perfect for those wanting to relax in comfort whilst surrounded by our amazing Welsh wildlife. Children will love playing in the Cherry Tree Adventure Park, discovering the Willow Maze, exploring our fantastic Nature Trails on foot or two wheels, and meeting our resident Water Buffalo. Adults can immediately unwind to the sounds of nature and enjoy the peace and tranquillity of this truly unique setting.

To arrange any of the above just give The Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales a ring on 01656 724100 or e-mail them – info@welshwildlife.org

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Council recognised for its work on domestic violence

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In the last year nearly 2,880 people in Carmarthenshire reported being a victim of domestic abuse.

CARMARTHENSHIRE County Council has once again been recognised for its work to combat domestic abuse.

It has achieved the White Ribbon UK accredited status for the second time running and departments will continue to work to raise awareness around domestic abuse and to contribute to ending male violence against women.

In the last year nearly 2,880 people in Carmarthenshire reported as being a victim of domestic abuse.

The White Ribbon campaign is a global initiative that encourages people, especially men and boys, to individually and collectively take action and change the behaviour and culture that leads to abuse and violence.

Domestic abuse affects both sexes with the largest number of violent incidents involving men against women. 

To show its commitment County Hall in Carmarthen will be lit up in purple on White Ribbon Day on November 25 and the White Ribbon flags will be flying in council buildings at Llanelli and Ammanford.

A message will also be printed on staff payslips signposting them to support channels.

Carmarthenshire County Council Cabinet Member for Communities and Rural Affairs and Chair of the Safer Communities Partnership, Cllr Ann Davies, said: 

“I am pleased that we were again successful in receiving accreditation from the campaign and recognising the work we have done and also plan to do going forward as part of our commitment to ending domestic violence. The figures in the last 12 months are still too high and that is those that have come forward to seek support. The pandemic has seen a significant rise in the number of referrals so it is vital that we do whatever we can to encourage people not to remain silent and speak out and seek support.”

Support and advice for anyone affected by domestic abuse is available by calling Live Fear Free on 0808 80 10 800.

For local advice you can contact Threshold (Llanelli) on 01554 752 422; Calan DVS (Ammanford) on 01269 597 474 Carmarthen Domestic Abuse Service (CarmDAS) on 01267 238 410 who provide support to both men and women 9am-5pm.

More information on the campaign can be found on the White Ribbon website

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Let’s get digital – Ceredigital

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Internet of Things

A NEW section, ‘Ceredigital’ dedicated to digital services, is now available on Ceredigion County Council’s website.

Ceredigital aims to provide clear information upon how digital technology can be used to support business growth, the economy, the quality of life for residents, tourism and the environment.

It covers a range of work and projects that the Council is currently involved with to improve the provision of digital technology across the county.

Information on the following services is included in the new section:

  • Broadband
  • Mobile
  • Digital Skills
  • Public Wi-Fi

It also includes information on the creation of a LoRaWAN network that the Council has been creating across the county which will accelerate the ‘Internet of Things’ innovation within the region; an open network used to improve business efficiencies.

Councillor Clive Davies, Digital Champion for Ceredigion County Council said: “Having access to affordable and reliable high-speed broadband and mobile connectivity has quickly become essential for everyone. The last two years have seen more people working from home than ever before, and the only way many of us have kept in contact with friends and family is through online catch-ups. It can be confusing and time consuming when you have connectivity issues and don’t know what support is out there.

“I’m very happy to announce that this new section is available. This resource can assist residents and businesses in finding out how to improve connectivity, funding that is available to do this, brushing up on digital skills, as well as providing details upon fixed and wireless projects that are currently being undertaken with Ceredigion.

With a county-wide LoRaWAN Internet of Things network, the largest in Wales, now is the time to focus on data innovation. This is no longer the gift of large organisations, or so called “Smart Cities”, we have the solid foundations of a rural smart network available right now, that can enable data driven decision making to take place right here in Ceredigion, enabling efficiency savings, and new product offering and opportunities as we recover from COVID-19”.

So, if you or your business is not reaching its digital potential for one reason or other, head over to Ceredigital to see what options are available to you right now.”

The new Ceredigital section can be found here: www.ceredigion.gov.uk/business/ceredigital.

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Helping you to make a difference in your community

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Ceredigion Rural

THE CYNNAL y Cardi Local Action Group is launching a new Grant Fund, as part of the Cynnal y Cardi LEADER scheme, which will support small scale LEADER activity in Ceredigion.

The fund will provide small-scale financial revenue to support pilot projects, feasibility studies, facilitation, networking activities and training and mentoring ideas. Applications are welcomed from organisations in the third, public and private sectors. They must meet the criteria and priorities of the Local Action Group.

The Grant Fund will focus on the following priorities from the Cynnal y Cardi Local Development Strategy:

  • supporting activity with the aim of strengthening opportunities for developing Ceredigion’s circular economy
  • supporting early intervention for the development of pre-commercial activity with the aim of developing entrepreneurial activity
  • strengthening community resilience activity with a focus on the role of Town and Community Councils in supporting and engaging with their communities
  • developing opportunities for re-engaging people and reinvigorating community activity following COVID-19 and piloting innovative uses for community facilities

The Cynnal y Cardi LEADER Grant Fund, which is administered by Ceredigion County Council, is supported through the Welsh Government Rural Communities – Rural Development Programme 2014-2020, which is funded by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development and the Welsh Government.

Councillor Rhodri Evans, Cabinet Member with responsibility for the Economy and Regeneration, said: “We understand that COVID-19 has made the past two years a tough time for the county, and in light of the pandemic, the priorities for Ceredigion’s Local Development Strategy have been reviewed in September 2020. This new grant scheme provides opportunities for us to tackle the issues and build on the opportunities following COVID-19 within our communities in order to strengthen our resilience. I urge you to take full advantage of this opportunity.”

The first closing date for submitting your applications is 17 January 2022. Submissions are welcome in Welsh or English. You will need to discuss your ideas with the team. Contact the team by email at cynnalycardi@ceredigion.gov.uk or visit www.cynnalycardi.org.uk for more information.

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