Winners Of The Gwynedd Council Staff Awards Revealed
Public service workers who go the extra mile for the benefit of local residents have been recognised during the recent Gwynedd Council annual ‘Council At Its Best’ awards ceremony.
Council chief officers, staff and elected members came together at Siambr Dafydd Orwig at the Gwynedd Council headquarters in Caernarfon to celebrate the achievements members of staff who had been nominated by their peers for their exceptional efforts.
The winners, selected by a panel of former winners, were revealed during the ceremony which was led by Dilwyn Williams, the Council’s Chief Executive and Morwena Edwards and Iwan Trefor Jones, the Council’s two Strategic Directors.
Chief Executive, Dilwyn Williams, said: “This awards ceremony is one of the highlights of the year for the Council as it shines the spotlight on the hard working and diligent members of staff who quietly go about their duties for the sake of local people.
“Every hour of every day, no matter where you are in Gwynedd, you are never far from a member of Council staff providing some of the wide range of services that we are responsible for – from educating children, social care, to leisure, to public protection and waste disposal, to name just a few. As a Council, we are immensely proud of each of the 6,000 or so members of staff who works for the authority, in increasingly difficult circumstances due to financial cuts, and ensure that the customer is at the heart of these services that we provide.
“These few hours spent at the short ceremony is an opportunity to recognise and to celebrate the work of some of these individuals and teams who have gone the extra mile for local residents, and to hold them up as examples of the excellent work being undertaken by most Council employees.”
During the ceremony, the audience were entertained by the Ysgol Syr Hugh Owen brass band at the Ysgol yr Hendre choir.
The awards shortlists and winners in the various categories, according to the Council’s staff core values, as follows:
Winner – David Owen, Senior Social Worker working with young people. Runners up: Mona Wyn Jones, a Community Carer who works with adults with learning disabilities and Annette Sellars, Duty Manager at the Caernarfon Tennis Centre.
David, from Caernarfon, was nominated and awarded because of his attitude towards his colleagues and his clients and the way he sacrifices his own time for his work. He works with young people who are growing up in challenging circumstances, transitioning from being in the care of social services to independent adult life.
Winner – Eleri Wyn Hughes, Tenancy Support Officer. Runners up: Ceryl Jones, Duty Manager at the Arfon Tennis Centre and the support workers team helping adults with severe learning disabilities at Cerrig yr Afon, Porthmadog.
Eleri, helps people who find themselves homeless, by helping them to find a roof over their heads. She has been awarded for the way she goes beyond the expectations of her post by helping the individual to open accounts with the electricity, gas and water suppliers and organising benefits; and goes as far as going to the foodbank for them or giving them a lift to a doctor’s appointment.
Winner: The Arfon Children’s Team. Runners up: Olwen Lloyd Jones, Day Care Supervisor at the Dolfeurig Training Centre, Dolgellau; mental health Support Worker Team; and Lisa Roberts, Administrative Assistant in the Children and Families Team.
The Arfon Children’s Team was awarded for the positive way the whole team has dealt with a particularly difficult year and an increased workload due to an increased demand for services coupled with public sector cuts. The team makes sure that the vulnerable children, young people and families of Gwynedd are safe and receive appropriate support.
Winner: Gwynedd and Anglesey Youth Justice Team. Runners up: Iona Griffith, Children and Families’ Manager and the Meirionnydd Home Care Team.
The Youth Justice Team have carried out amazing work in preventing young people from slipping into a life of crime – during 2007-08, 400 children annually entered into the criminal justice system; by 2012-13 this figure had fallen to 97; and by 2014-15 it had fallen again to 62, despite cuts in funding. There has also been a reduction in the number of young people who re-offend. All of this means that more Gwynedd children have bright futures and that the county’s communities are safer and more pleasant places to live and work.
Value For Money Award
Winner: Anwen Davies, Social Enterprise Liaison Manager. Runners up: Plas Pengwaith Residential Home staff and friends; Nia Edwards and Eleri Stonehewer from the Gyda’n Gilydd support team (Gwynedd Team Around the Family).
Anwen, was applauded for the way she has made savings for the Council, by encouraging different departments to work together, or groups from the third sector, to provide better value for money services. She took responsibility for continuing with a £1.3 million OPUS scheme which gives vulnerable adults in Gwynedd job opportunities.
Welsh Learner of the Year
The Dafydd Orwig Memorial Award is presented to an individual within the Council for protecting and promoting Gwynedd’s culture, by learning the Welsh language. The learner of the year for 2016 is Public Protection Officer, Les Pursglove. He has been recognised for his enthusiasm in learning Welsh and for using it in his day-to-day work.
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