High Sheriff of Clwyd recognises the work of young people

Jim O’Toole, the High Sheriff of Clwyd 2016/17, has been recognising the work of local young people and volunteers at his Community Awards evening held recently at Theatr Clwyd in Mold.  Each year the High Sheriff acknowledges the work of young who have received grants from his Crimebeat youth fund.
Winners of this year’s prestigious Crimebeat Project of the Year Award were young people from Flintshire Sorted and their film ‘Young, Wild and Free’ that is aimed at educating young people about the risks of cannabis use. “Young, Wild & Free” tells the story of how drugs can creep into your life and then consume it, leading to poor life choices. It is told in a non-linear style through the eyes and mind of lead character ‘Beth’.

Two years in the making, the film was funded by Crimebeat, Gwirvol and Flintshire Youth Work Strategy Support Grant and facilitated by TAPE Community Music and Film. The short film was devised by the young people who form the Flintshire Sorted Steering Group, who inspired the script and starred in the film.

The Flintshire Sorted team have been delivering the film to educate against prevention throughout high schools in the county, together with colleges, pupil referral units, youth clubs and community projects.

Also recognised at the Awards were:
Ysgol Deiniol, Marchwiel who won a Highly Commended Crimebeat award

Crimebeat funding has supported the schools eCadets scheme which focusses on internet safety for young people. As part of this scheme pupils went to the award winning education centre at DangerPoint to undertake a bespoke session on internet safety for young people. The project is aimed at pupils in the school aged 9,10 and 11 years  and is in support of the eCADETS scheme that the school have signed up to address internet safety and educate pupils about the correct use of the internet.

With the active involvement and support of PCSO Lynne Maurice the project has shown the community, school, parents and children alike, that the police are supporting the safety of our young and vulnerable children.  

Ysgol Bryn Alyn, Wrexham who won a Highly Commended Crimebeat award for their school attendance project

The aim of the project was to increase the school attendance of specific young people who, because of their poor attendance, are becoming involved in anti-social behaviour and criminal activity within the community.

Working with School Community Police Officer Debbie Barker the school identified young people within our school pastoral meetings. Some had also identified as possible NEETS (young people not in Education, Employment or Training ).

Using early intervention with the young people to attempt to engage them within the learning environment, school Attendance Improvement Plans (AIP’s) were used as a strategy to encourage young people to come to school and attempt to cross any barriers that were preventing that.

As a result of this project half of the young people attending the project improved their school attendance, with a number of them having 100 % attendance for the entire programme. They were all given ‘exam survival packs’ to equip them ready for their exams. The majority of the group did not own a pen prior to attending, Because of the success of this project it is now being rolled in other schools in Wrexham.

The High Sheriff said: “It has been a pleasure to recognise the work of all of these young people and the adults who support them. I’ve been delighted to have met many of them whilst they were undertaking their projects during my year in office. To be able to make these Awards at the end of my term of office is a real honour for me. Crimebeat helps young people develop projects which make their communities a safer place to live. Since 2002, Crimebeat in Clwyd has invested over £90,000 in projects that support our young people, and this year we have been able to fund 16 projects with grants totalling £6,800. It has been a privilege to see many of these projects take place, and see for myself the positive impact that they having are on our young people.”

The High Sheriff was also pleased to celebrate the work of volunteers who work tirelessly across the four counties of Clwyd.

Working with the four County Voluntary Councils who each submitted their nominations for local volunteers, the High Sheriff told the audience: ‘This Ceremony is to acknowledge and highlight some of the work done by so many volunteers who do not look for any recompense for the time and effort given. With so many people putting so much into voluntary work, preparing shortlists and subsequently selecting winners has been extremely difficult.  The quality of this year’s nominations has been extremely high and so many individuals and organisations deserve recognition for their work in our communities.’
AVOW – Association of Voluntary Organisations in Wrexham:

Val Shields

In recognition of the positive impact of her volunteering for over 40 years in the Gresford community

Philip Jones

In recognition of his volunteering at Advance Brighter Futures and representing the interests of the people they support

Home Start, Wrexham

In recognition of their work supporting disadvantaged parents and children to have a positive and lasting effect on their health and welfare.

CVSC – Community and Voluntary Support Conwy:

Ali Ussery

In recognition of her work to raise awareness of victims of modern-day slavery.

Sonia Owen

In recognition of her voluntary work with Action for Asperger’s whilst living with the disability of autism herself.

Clwb yr Efail

In recognition of the tremendously valuable role the club plays in the lives of older members of the community in a time when many older residents feel socially excluded.


DVSC – Denbighshire Voluntary Services Council:

Ros Mercer

In recognition of her tireless work and fund-raising support for Vale of Clwyd Mind

Bethan Purser & Wendy Pamment

In recognition of their community work with Denbighshire Learning Disability Forum

The Artisan Collective

In recognition of the support they give to groups across Denbighshire, organising and delivering community projects that support local residents.


FLVC – Flintshire Local Voluntary Council:

Becky Vaughan

In recognition of her work as a First Responder with North Wales Search and Rescue serving the residents of Flintshire and the wider community since 1986

Karen Hodgkinson

In recognition of her tireless work at the forefront of community development in Mold and the surrounding areas.

North Wales Energy Advice Centre

In recognition of fighting fuel poverty, improving the housing, health, environment and wellbeing in our communities and improving energy efficiency across Flintshire and North Wales