The minister was invited by Gwynedd Children and Young People’s Partnership and he was joined by the leader of Gwynedd Council, Councillor Dyfed Edwards and Councillor Brian Jones, the Council’s Lead Member for Children and Young People.
The delegation saw the various projects, supported by the partnership, which are aimed at supporting children from deprived areas, to make the most of their potential and to break the circle of poverty.
During the morning the Deputy Minister visited the Maesgerchen area of Bangor. At Tŷ Cegin, the Marchog Communities First centre, he saw how play schemes and parenting courses are improving children’s quality of life.
At Ysgol Gan Cegin the Deputy Minister saw how a scheme funded by the Raise Fund is helping children who are under-performing academically to achieve better standards. He also visited Caban Cegin, on the school site, where there are child care facilities under the Flying Start scheme.
In Blaenau Ffestiniog he visited Ysgol y Moelwyn where he saw a project funded by the partnership aimed at encouraging young people who are disenfranchised to maintain an interest in education and improve their self confidence. There was also an opportunity to see a play scheme in action which is aimed at improving the young people’s health and fitness.
At the Barnado’s-run Caban Bach the visitors saw how a partnership between the Council and the charity is providing services for children and families.
Councillor Brian Jones, Gwynedd Council’s Children’s portfolio leader, said:
“We were delighted that the Deputy Minister for Children could join us to visit these important projects, this was a very positive and successful event. As portfolio leader for children and young people I feel that it’s important that we highlight the best examples of partnerships which work to support of projects that protects children and nurtures their abilities in both rural and urban areas of Gwynedd.
“These projects focus on children and their families who live in deprived areas, and how we can support them to make the most of educational opportunities so that they can make the most of their potential.”
Councillor Dyfed Edwards, leader of Gwynedd Council added:
“I am confident that the experience will prepare the ground for the Deputy Minister’s return to Gwynedd in November, where he will take part in a conference on child poverty during the annual Gwynedd Children and Young People’s Week.”
The Deputy Minister for Children, Huw Lewis AM, said:
“Lifting children out of poverty is my main priority. Across Wales there is some great work going on to help and support vulnerable children and their parents and today I’ve been able to see first hand how projects and services are helping to improve the lives of children and young people in Gwynedd.
“Speaking to parents who have themselves been supported by the Flying Start programme I can see that it’s making a real difference to their lives. Whether it’s by providing childcare places for their children or access to parenting programmes it is all helping to build strong and stable families which contribute to a more prosperous community.”
For more information about the Gwynedd Children and Young People’s Week visit the website www.gwynedd-ni.org.uk/wythnos-ni