Twelve people who have completed their apprenticeships from Gwynedd Council have now taken up posts within the organisation. "They include roles like a Communications and Marketing Officer, Highways Technician, Customer Advisers, HR Assistants, Youth Deputy Leader and Care Assistant," said Plaid Cymru Councillor, Nia Jeffreys (pictured), who has responsibility for careers at Gwynedd Council.
So far this year, 30 apprentices have been appointed to work for the authority, with more to come in the coming months. The intention is to offer 20 apprenticeship jobs within Gwynedd Council annually, going forward.
Steffan William Chambers, 23, from Dyffryn Ardudwy, (pictured) is one of the Council's Community Care Co-ordinators.
“No two days are the same,” said Steffan who has been able to return home to live, thanks to the apprenticeship opportunity.
“I worked in Carmarthenshire after completing my degree at Aberystwyth University. When I saw the advert for apprenticeships within Gwynedd Council, I took the opportunity to apply.
“I’m now studying a social services masters degree, which is a direct result of the apprenticeship I've had with the Council. I have a politics degree, so the Gwynedd apprentice scheme has given me the opportunity to learn and specialise in a completely different field. I'm delighted to be given the opportunity.”
Plaid Cymru Gwynedd Councillor, Nia Jeffreys of Porthmadog who has responsibility for careers at Gwynedd said: "I'm delighted that the Council, led by Plaid Cymru, has ensured investment for the scheme. Nearly £1million has been earmarked for the apprenticeship scheme and offers Gwynedd residents a unique opportunity to receive training and a salary while learning skills and knowledge on the job.
“Hearing Steffan's story is a breath of fresh air and I congratulate him and the rest of the apprentices on their achievement.
“Plaid Cymru Gwynedd is leading the way in training through the medium of Welsh and we are proud of the collaboration between the Council and the colleges. Offering a quality career path and jobs for Gwynedd residents is a source of great pride to me and all county councillors.”
Since the spring, Steffan has accepted a post as Community Care Co-ordinator in Gwynedd, having completed his two-year apprenticeship. He works part-time while studying for his masters.
Steffan explains that working at the height of the Covid19 pandemic bought the best out of people.
“We all worked as one and the whole team was keen to work together to protect our most vulnerable residents. There is now some sign of fatigue within the workforce and we are facing the same challenges that the care sector nationally is facing, a shortage of carers.
“It's a very interesting sector to work in and the role I have is varied. Our carers do an amazing job at grassroot level. Obviously, the nature of my work has changed, but we're starting to get back into a routine and beginning to return to carry out joint visits and care staff reviews, on site. I really enjoy the job and I am glad to be able to work back in my own community,” Steffan explains.
Gwynedd Council will soon be advertising further opportunities to join the authority as an apprentice. For the latest, visit www.gwynedd.llyw.cymru/apprenticeships If you are interested in working in the care sector, please visit: https://www.gwynedd.llyw.cymru/en/Council/Jobs/SOSDare2Care.aspx