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Two Ceredigion organisations awarded the prestigious Defence Silver ERS Award

Colin Jones Penparcau forum

Two organisations in Ceredigion, Penparcau Community Forum Ltd and Woody’s Lodge, have achieved the Defence Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS) Silver Award for 2021. Awarded by the Reserve Forces’ and Cadets’ Association for Wales (RFCA), the awards recognises employers who have actively demonstrated their support for the Armed Forces community through implementing practical policies in the workplace.

Following the announcement of the awards, Ceredigion County Council’s Chairman and Ceredigion’s Armed Forces Champion, Councillor Paul Hinge said: “As Armed Forces Champion I’m delighted that two high profile charities that operate in Ceredigion have been recognised for their contribution in the Employers Recognition Scheme. I know that the Armed Forces Community both serving and those who are veterans really appreciate the hard work these organisations have put in to achieve these awards which are there to help those transitioning back into civilian life and those who are reservists to bring their highly transferable skills back into our community to help enhance the future of Ceredigion. My most heartfelt congratulations to them.”

A total of 24 organisations across Wales were awarded. Under the Defence Employer Recognition Scheme, employers support Defence personnel and encourage others to do the same. The scheme has three levels, Bronze, Silver and Gold for organisations that pledge, demonstrate and advocate support for Defence and the Armed Forces community.

To achieve Silver, organisations must proactively demonstrate that the Armed Forces community are not unfairly disadvantaged as part of their recruitment policies. They must also actively ensure their workforce is aware of their positive policies towards Defence people issues for reservists, veterans, Cadet Force Adult Volunteers, and spouses and partners of those serving in the Armed Forces.

Situated near Llandysul, Woody’s Lodge is a meeting space where those who’ve served can find expert advice across a range of topics as well as the chance to make new friends and re-connect with their loved ones.

Graham Jones, Woody’s Lodge Chief Executive Officer said: “It was such a nice surprise to receive the award in recognition for the hard work carried out by our team across Wales.”

Situated in Penparcau, Penparcau Community Forum Ltd is a community-led organisation that develops sustainable and inclusive community activities for the benefit of all.

Karen Rees Roberts, the Forum Manager said: ‘’We are extremely proud and grateful to receive this accolade and would like to thank Colin Jones the Veterans Peer Support Mentor for all his hard work.’’