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North Wales project celebrates success of local young people

Lois Hughes from Arwyddo with Nel, the inspiration behind her business idea.

A unique project which helps young people across Gwynedd and Anglesey venture into the world of work and business has paid tribute to the latest cohort to take part in the scheme.

A Menter Môn project, Llwyddo’n Lleol 2050 aims to challenge the perception that it’s necessary to leave rural areas like north west Wales to succeed in work or business. Some 35 participants have already received support through the scheme – several having gone on to set up successful businesses or to find work locally.

The project focuses on entrepreneurship, employability and developing professional skills. But, with changing priorities in the wake of Covid19 there’s also a clear message that lifestyle is also important and that this is the ideal place to ensure the right balance between work and leisure.

Jade Owen, is a project officer with Menter Môn, and has been supporting the young people who have been taking part in Llwyddo’n Lleol to date. She said: “Too often young people feel they have to leave their communities to succeed in their careers. This is such a loss, especially in rural areas and the impact it has on the economy and the Welsh language is significant.

“Our message through Llwyddo’n Lleol is simple – there are plenty of opportunities here in north-west Wales in so many different sectors. We can provide support and advice to those who want to turn an idea in to a successful business or to help improve skills through work placements and training.”

One who benefited from taking part in Llwyddo’n Lleol 2050 earlier this year is Lois Hughes. Having studied British Sign Language (BSL) she found that there were no resources available in Welsh – so she decided to change this by setting up her own business called ‘Arwyddo’ with a help from the project. Encouraging others to go for it she said: “Llwyddo’n Lleol has meant that I have been able to turn an idea into reality – without it I don’t think I would have taken the first step. It has given me the confidence and motivation to go for it and take the plunge.”

More recently the project ran the ‘Swyddogion Stori’ programme which gave ten young people marketing training with Beth Woodhouse from Marketshed. Whilst developing skills and experience of the young people, 19 local businesses also benefited from free marketing support.

Sioned Morgan is projects director at Menter Môn. She explains why this is such an important project. “Promoting local opportunities is central to our vision as a company and ensuring those opportunities are available to young people. We employ many who are just starting off on their career journeys and want to encourage other local business to do the same so that we can keep talent in the area, for the benefit of our communities, the economy and the Welsh language.”

Over the next few months Llwyddo’n Lleol 2050 is again calling on young people from Gwynedd and Anglesey to register to make the most of new opportunities to get support as they take a first step into employment.  The next round of opportunities with the scheme will be shared on Facebook and Instagram.

The project has received funding through the Welsh Government Arfor Fund and 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.