By awarding a new agreement that will ensure the continuation of the Llwyddo’n Lleol project, the ARFOR programme has reinforced its commitment to creating economic opportunities for young people and young families within Welsh language strongholds.
Created as part of a plan in Gwynedd and Anglesey during the first phase of ARFOR, a new partnership has been established between Menter Môn and Menter a Busnes to lead the work. The intention is to build on the work undertaken originally and to extend to the counties of Ceredigion and Carmarthenshire.
With out-migration of families and young people being recognised as one of the main reasons for a decline in the number of Welsh speakers, Llwyddo’n Lleol aims to persuade those who are most likely to go, or who have already left, that there is a future and economic prosperity for them in rural areas of west Wales.
£3 million will be invested to deliver the Llwyddo’n Lleol project.
Economy Minister, Vaughan Gething, said: “It’s excellent news that the work on ARFOR is continuing. By working with our local authority partners, we want to support communities that are strongholds of the Welsh language to flourish through economic interventions and contribute to increasing opportunities to see and use the Welsh language on a daily basis – and for young people to feel that they have a future in these areas. We look forward to seeing some really innovative ideas as part of the second phase of the programme.”
Plaid Cymru Designated Member, Cefin Campbell, said: “ARFOR is a key part of the Co-operation Agreement between Plaid Cymru and the Welsh Government. The fund will help boost entrepreneurship and business growth and is part of our drive to grow the local economy and the Welsh language together. This new partnership is an exciting example of ARFOR in action.”
Dafydd Gruffydd, Managing Director of Menter Môn explains: “We are delighted to have the opportunity to continue our work on Llwyddo’n Lleol and to extend it to the other counties of the ARFOR programme. Our original messages about work opportunities and quality of life in western counties are just as relevant (if not more so) today. We look forward to working with Menter a Busnes and leading new work packages to encourage families and young people to consider a future in their home area.”
Llŷr Roberts, Chief Executive of Menter a Busnes, added: “We know that losing young people and families undermines the viability of rural communities and has an impact on local services. We are therefore very pleased to be able to play a part in trying to tackle this challenge and to work with our partners in Menter Môn to develop and pilot ideas that can contribute to attracting and retaining young people in their home areas. Great work has already been done – this is an opportunity for us to expand and develop on that in Ceredigion and Carmarthenshire.”
ARFOR 2 is an £11 million programme funded by the Welsh Government through a co-operation agreement between the Welsh Government and Plaid Cymru, which builds on the first phase of ARFOR. ARFOR operates across Anglesey, Gwynedd, Ceredigion and Carmarthenshire. The aim is to pilot innovative methods of promoting entrepreneurship and creating quality jobs in the four counties, to support the survival and growth of the Welsh language. Phase two of the programme will continue until 2025.
To find out more about the Llwyddo’n Lleol project visit Carmarthenshire County Council Stand at Eisteddfod yr Urdd on 2nd June 2023 at 1.30pm.