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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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Carol Vorderman joining BBC Radio Wales this summer

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BBC RADIO WALES has announced a brand new presenter is joining the station for summer 2018. Television personality Carol Vorderman will this weekend join the station for Sunday Morning with…

Carol is the latest high profile name to present the programme, which started on June 22.

The programme will feature a mix of music and conversation.

Carol will present Sunday Morning with… on July 22 and 29, and August 5, 12 and 19.

Carol Vorderman said: “I can’t wait to get started. The programme will have cheek, mischief, laughing and a lot of it. All number quizzes are banned. I’ll have lots of guests on with me, so it should be a good laugh”.

Previous presenters of the Sunday morning slot include Eve Myles, Connie Fisher, Colin Jackson, Suzanne Packer and Lucy Owen.

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Police concerned about missing man

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CONCERNS are growing for 75-year-old Samuel Geler Thomas, who has been missing from his home in Llanelli since July 10.

Mr Thomas is described as around 5’ 6-7” tall and bald. He was last seen wearing khaki jeans, a white t-shirt and white and black Puma trainers.

He is believed to have left his house between 6am and 6.30am on July 10. Enquiries have established that his bus pass was last used on the X2 service in Porthcawl at around 7.40am on July 12, and there was a potential sighting in St Mary’s Street, Cardiff, on July 13.

Anyone with information that could lead to Mr Thomas’s whereabouts is urged to call Dyfed-Powys Police on 101, quoting reference 522 of July 10.

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Lucy’s Law gets support from AMs

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AN EVENT calling for the introduction of ‘Lucy’s Law’ was held in the Senedd last Wednesday (Jul 11).

Assembly Members Eluned Morgan and Vikki Howells sponsored the event in support of an immediate ban on the sale of puppies by pet shops and other third-party commercial dealers, in response to growing concerns from animal charities that not enough is being done to prevent illegal breeding and animal cruelty.

The sale of puppies through commercial third-party dealers both sustains and is dependent upon the existence of ‘puppy farms’, where puppies are bred for maximum profit and with minimal regard for animal welfare.

Although very few high street pet shops sell puppies these days, the third-party trade remains significant across the UK with dealers operating from a diverse array of premises including private homes and puppy superstores. Evidence suggests that the trade sources puppies bred in Wales.

According to animal charity, CARIAD, a ban is the essential first step towards ending the practice of farming dogs for profit with little or no regard for their welfare or their fitness as family companions. Stress, increased risk of disease, poor breeding practices and irresponsible selling tactics are all associated with the method of third-party puppy selling.

Respected Vet and campaigner Marc Abraham spoke during the event at the National Assembly for Wales, he said:
“It simply isn’t enough to license puppy sellers, we must have a full and complete ban, to stop the trade and supply of dogs bred on such an extensive scale. Lucy’s Law will help to change the way dogs are bred in this country. It will make the process more transparent and raise standards, improving the economy and employment opportunities. This is a revolution in dog breeding and it will do wonders for the reputation of Wales as a responsible dog breeding nation.”

Eluned Morgan AM said: “There are many documented cases of puppy farming, particularly in the region I represent. Puppy smuggling is also an issue with several reported cases of puppies entering our ports from Ireland. The adoption of Lucy’s Law in Wales sends a strong message that as a nation we expect the highest animal welfare practises and that the cruel act of puppy farming can be consigned to history. I want us to be ambitious and to take the lead on this legislation which I hope will be a real possibility following this event in the Senedd.”

Vikki Howells AM said: “I am pleased to be jointly hosting this event today with important contributions from Pup Aid and CARIAD and Marc the vet who has done so much to raise awareness of Lucy’s Law across the United Kingdom and now here in Wales too.”

Legislation relating to Lucy’s Law is devolved to the Welsh Government under the 1956 An

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