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Recycling scheme praised

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R ecycling scheme: Over 30 tonnes of white goods collected.

R ecycling scheme: Over 30 tonnes of white goods collected.

OVER 30 tonnes of unwanted white goods were collected in Carmarthenshire by a council-run initiative last year. The Gwyn i Wyrdd project take appliances like electric cookers, washing machines and tumble driers, and either refurbish them for resale, or recycle the components. Any Carmarthenshire residents with unwanted appliances can contact the team and get them picked up for free. However, they suggest making a donation of £10 for fridges and freezers because they are classified as hazardous waste.

The Gwyn i Wyrdd project is run by Carmarthenshire Council’s Social Care, Health and Housing department. As well as promoting repair, reuse and recycling, the scheme provides opportunities for people who have struggled to find work due to physical or learning disabilities, mental health issues, substance abuse problems, or chronic health conditions. Electrical appliances are taken to a workshop in Cross Hands where they are assessed and, where applicable, repaired by EEEsafe registered domestic appliance technicians. Technician Stuart Brain spoke to the Herald about the work of the Gwyn i Wyrdd project. “About 11-15% of what we collect goes for resale,” he said.

“Almost everything else gets recycled – except fridges and freezers, which are disposed of by the council.” We also do some upcycling; the people training with us make planters out of washing machine drums which we sell on a stall in the St Elli market.” The initiative has been going for around two years, and has been very successful: “We’ve got 2 or three volunteers, technicians, and a van driver, who’s just been offered a permanent contract,” Mr Brain said. “There are generally about 20 adults training with us, and we’ve seen more and more people trying to enrol. As well as the upcycling, they also do some woodwork, and what we call contact work, which involves fitting magnets in alarm systems.” “Prince Charles visited us last year, and was very impressed with what we are doing. We even sold a planter to his press secretary!”

Director of Social Care, Health and Housing Jake Morgan praised Gwyn i Wyrdd: “This is an excellent project which not only provides affordable and safely repaired white goods to local communities but also offers training opportunities and the chance for people to learn new skills,” he said. His views were echoed by Carmarthenshire Council’s Director of Environment Christina Harrhy, who said: “This project is an example reuse at its best; it provides a free collection for white goods that people no longer want, jobs and training for those that need it, and quality electrical appliances at reasonable prices. “We must try and reduce the amount of electrical waste and repair and reuse as much as possible. It is such a waste to buy something new when it can easily be repaired.” For more information or if you have an electrical appliance you no longer want visit www.gwyniwyrdd. co.uk or call 01269 845685. The project also has a Facebook page www.facebook.com/gwyniwyrdd .

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NSPCC: Wales conference puts spotlight on domestic abuse

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PROTECTING women and children from domestic abuse was the focus of a ground-breaking conference in Wales this week (Mar 28).

Organised by Cardiff University’s Exchange Network – with support from NSPCC Cymru / Wales and Welsh Women’s Aid – the event aimed to share information on the most effective approaches to tackle all forms of violence against women, domestic abuse and support for victims – be they adults or children.

Preventing violence from happening and protecting those who fall victim to domestic abuse formed the focus of the conference, at Cardiff’s Novotel Hotel.

Representatives from Welsh Government, Relate Cymru, Barnardos and Rape and Sexual Abuse (RASA) Centre also attended.

Domestic abuse continues to be a significant reason for young people to contact Childline. In 2016/17 volunteers at the NSPCC-run helpline undertook 120 counselling sessions with children from Wales who had concerns about abuse by a partner in their own relationship.

And 241 children from Wales contacted Childline to discuss parental domestic abuse.

Some young people who witness this also experience physical abuse by their parents. This can sometimes happen when they try and intervene in the abuse taking place, with some children telling Childline they were hit by their mother or father when trying to stop a fight.

“Sometimes my dad gets in a bad mood and gets really aggressive. He says horrible things to me and my mum and it scares me. In the past he was threatening to hit my mum, when I tried to get him to calm down he slapped me instead. I feel like neither of them listen to me and they don’t understand how upset it’s all making me.” (Girl, 16-18, Wales)

Head of NSPCC Cymru / Wales, Des Mannion, told The Llanelli Herald: “Domestic abuse can have a huge impact on a child’s physical and emotional wellbeing and it’s hugely important that we share information and discuss ways to both prevent violence and protect victims.

“We all have a part to play in tackling domestic abuse and it’s important to pick up the phone if you’re concerned so that our advisers can offer guidance and get help where it’s needed.

“Stepping in early helps to change behaviours and avoid abuse escalating, and putting the child at the heart of interventions is paramount in keeping children safe and limiting long-term damage.

“It is also vital that children and young people affected by domestic abuse have access to the right kind of support to overcome the trauma of witnessing and experiencing domestic abuse.”

Any child worried about domestic abuse can call Childline on 0800 11 11. Any adult who is concerned about a child can call the NSPCC Helpline on 0808 800 5000.

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Pop-up craft stalls return to St Elli

Tamsin Mathias

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Photo credit: www.stelli.co.uk/about-us/

LLANELLI’S St Elli Shopping Centre is once again playing host to a fantastic group of pop-up craft stalls today and tomorrow (Mar 1-2).

Following on from a highly successful outing just before Christmas, the ‘Pert A Blasus Pop-Up Emporium’ will see a variety of crafters take to the Atrium to sell their handmade crafts.

A group of friends who met whilst running stalls at craft markets around South Wales, Pert A Blasus brings together a host of skill sets and backgrounds – including a former kitchen fitter and scaffolder, a former clerical assistant, and a primary school teacher.

Primary school teacher Jill Davies has been crafting most of her life as a hobby; however, seven years ago decided to launch ‘Dzines by Jill’, which sees her hand-decorate plain pieces of ceramic and household items with her own unique designs.

Jill also organises her own ‘Made it Markets’ in Neath.

Also on board with Pert A Blasus is Steve Kennedy, who is the brainchild of ‘Cut n Scroll’, where he hand cuts items from wood and enlists the help of his wife Tanya for painting and gemming; Wendy Taylor, also a primary school teacher, who completed a precious metal course at Gower College and now makes her own items for her ‘Simplicity by Silver’ stall; and Jill James who runs her ‘Pretty Cute Fairies’ stall.

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Bread and Jam for Christmas

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A young woman with Spina bifida has been left alone in an empty home with nothing but bread and jam to eat and with no cooking facilities. Jackie lives a stone’s throw from Llanelli Town Hall and yet she claims she has been abandoned by the County Council, her AM, her MP and Social Services. She faces a wait until January 10 before service providers meet to discuss her case.

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