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Welsh Government to support 1,000 apprenticeship vacancies

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THIS summer, the Welsh Government is helping to support 1,000 brand new apprenticeship vacancies for people of all ages across Wales.

The vacancies, which will be posted on the Apprenticeship Matching Service on the Careers Wales website throughout the summer, will offer young people and adults the chance to secure an exciting career in a wide range of disciplines including ICT, creative industries, construction and STEM, where skill shortages are particularly prevalent.

The job roles will all be apprenticeship opportunities with qualifications to match, with a particular focus on technical and professional skills. Some of the apprenticeships that are available now include journalist, associate scientist, quantity surveyor, ICT and computing, digital and marketing.

The Apprenticeship Programme in Wales is funded by the Welsh Government with support from the European Social Fund.

An electrical apprentice with a natural aptitude for science and maths has found the perfect way to use his natural ability to kick-start his career after completing an apprenticeship with Calsonic Kansei.

Bruno Forkouh, 25, from Llanelli has always had an interest in engineering and electronics and from a young age was fascinated with finding out how things worked. Pursuing a career in engineering therefore seemed like the obvious choice for him but after relocating from Italy just six years ago he was unsure which pathway to follow into his dream career.

After starting a BTEC in electronics and electrics at Coleg Sir Gar, Bruno was offered the chance to do work-experience with Calsonic Kansei. Bruno quickly impressed with his natural flair and within two weeks was asked to apply for one of its apprenticeship programmes.

Now five years on, thanks to Calsonic Kansei, Coleg Sir Gar and the Welsh Government, Bruno is working as a fully qualified electrical technician while studying for a degree in electronics and electrics and is looking ahead to the future.

Bruno said: “I’ve always had a natural gift for understanding science, engineering and maths and knew I wanted to make sure of it in my career. Back in Italy I started investigating pursuing a career in structural engineering but when I relocated to Wales I decided to shift over into a more electrical engineering pathway.

“I started by doing a BTEC at Coleg Sir Gâr but was really lucky to be offered the chance to do an apprenticeship with Calsonic Kansei after just two weeks’ work experience. I was really pleased to be offered such a fantastic opportunity and during the three years of doing my apprenticeship I learned so much. I spent my time rotating around the different departments within the business learning about everything from design and manufacturing to production and maintenance.

“I really enjoy the hands-on approach to learning and being able to put theory into practice every day which really helped me to understand exactly how and why everything works.

“The apprenticeship has been a brilliant way of gaining practical, hands-on experience and kick-starting my career in a field I love. It’s opened doors and will provide me with all the experience, skills and qualifications I need to progress my career.”

Wales has developed a highly successful apprenticeship programme over recent years. Apprenticeships are increasingly becoming a viable alternative to traditional academic routes into employment, helping people of all ages gain on the job experience while studying for a nationally recognised qualification.

With results day around the corner, the Welsh Government is urging people in Wales to consider how an apprenticeship can be the first step of a worthwhile, skilled career path.

Minister for Skills and Science, Julie James, said: “Apprenticeships are the start of an exciting and rewarding career and can benefit anyone of any age, giving them an opportunity to gain practical, on the job experience while gaining all the skills and qualifications they need.

“Apprenticeships are a key investment for employers who can train their workforce in the specialist skills they need within their organisation. Overall, apprenticeships play an important role in increasing the nation’s overall skill set and driving economic growth, making sure that Wales remains competitive on the world stage.

“The Welsh Government is working in conjunction with training providers across Wales to highlight 1000 apprenticeship vacancies in organisations from various sectors within small SMEs to larger global conglomerates over the summer period.

“The job roles available offer all the benefits of an apprenticeship with qualifications to match, and there is a particular focus on improving technical and professional higher level skills. The Welsh Government is rebalancing its investment towards the priority areas that deliver higher returns and the range of opportunities that will be available over the summer reflect this.

“The roles available are open to people of all ages and provide access to high quality training for individuals who want to achieve their full potential. We already have a strong record of quality apprenticeships and our goal is to build on this and offer apprenticeships in sectors that drive growth and prospects of increased earning power.”

For more information about becoming an apprentice, visit careerswales.com and following the apprenticeship link or to find out how your business could benefit from recruiting an apprentice, visit Skills Gateway for Business at https://businesswales.gov.wales/skillsgateway/apprenticeships or call 03000 603000.

The Apprenticeship Programme in Wales is funded by the Welsh Government with support from the European Social Fund.

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Victoria Road: Meat stolen shed not fit for humans, say police

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DYFED-POWYS POLICE is warning that meat stolen during a burglary in Llanelli is not fit for consumption by humans.
Several bags of frozen chicken and other meat were taken from a shed in Queen Victoria Road some time over the past few days, along with a radio controlled car and an electric saw.
If eaten, the meat could result in food poisoning.
Officers are concerned that the offender could be intending to sell the meat on, or might already have sold it.
Anyone with information about the burglary is asked to contact Dyfed-Powys Police on 101.

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Llanelli: Woman on trial for fiddling more than £100,000 in benefits

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A LLANELLI woman is to stand trial accused of fiddling more than £100,000 in benefits she was not entitled to.

Emma Jane Campbell, aged 49, appeared at Swansea Crown Court today for a plea and trial preparation hearing before Judge Keith Thomas.

Campbell, of Elizabeth Street, denied retaining wrongful credits totalling £42,908 between 2002 and 2010, £63,113 between 2002 and 2016 and £7,722 between 20002 and 2013.

The amounts were said to relate to income support, housing benefit and council tax relief received by Campbell when she had capital in excess of the permitted amount.

Campbell is also charged with fraud by claiming Jobseeker’s allowance and employment support allowance but failing to notify the Department for Work and Pensions of her true financial position.

Campbell entered pleas of not guilty to all the charges.

She was granted bail until the start of her trial on April 17.

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Burry Port RFC welcomes asset transfer

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BURRY PORT RFC has welcomed its takeover of its home base from Carmarthenshire County Council.

The Rugby Club has signed a 99 year lease for the playing fields and changing rooms at Burry Port Memorial Park as part of the county council’s asset transfer programme.

The club has also been awarded a Maintenance Grant to assist with maintaining the asset and an Improvement Grant to assist with making any improvement works they may wish to undertake.

Around 80 per cent of the county council’s recreation assets have already been transferred, or are nearing completion, to town or community councils, or community groups.

Two years ago the council’s executive board agreed a package to offer community councils or groups the opportunity to take over the running of facilities in their areas.

Councillors believe it gives local people greater control in the future of their area and their community.

Burry Port RFC secretary Jonathan Davies said the club accepted that changes had to be made although it would not have chosen it.

“In hindsight I think it is a positive thing for the club. It has increased the assets of the club and given members a sense of belonging to the park.”

Executive board member for assets Cllr David Jenkins said: “Unfortunately, we can no longer afford to maintain all the recreational assets in our portfolio.

“However, this is not just a cost saving exercise – communities are often best placed to manage facilities in their local environment.

“I’m pleased that Burry Port RFC has taken over and is looking forward to the future.”

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