In mid-2020 in light of the pressures placed on partners by the pandemic response, it was agreed to ‘pause’ the current workstream projects and instead focus on re-shaping the work of the PSB. The priorities of many PSB partners have changed since these action plans were revised and new challenges have arisen, therefore progress in some areas has been slower than in others.
The project was a desk based review funded by NRW and was undertaken by consultants. The aim was to determine and record the current actions/activities being undertaken by 10 PSB member organisations to address the challenges of climate change, reduce their net carbon status and more widely, map any community or partnership work being undertaken to assist the county to become carbon neutral
Work undertaken included:
A draft report was produced with 20 recommendations
The report produced will feed into high level PSB partner discussions that have recently commenced around the climate change, carbon reduction and climate adaptation agendas with the aim of producing a climate change strategy for Pembrokeshire
A report containing 20 recommendations which aimed to guide the decarbonisation activites of PSB partner organisations was finalised in May 2021. Many of these recommended actions are being taken forward individually by partner agencies.
This project was targeted at two Wellbeing plan workstreams - Environmental and Climate Change Risk Assessment and Becoming a Carbon Neutral County. The aim was to bring organisations and individuals together to develop a Pembrokeshire Sustainable Natural Capital Forum and employ an individual to work with partners to develop project plans and future funding proposals around four themes:
Green Fuse - igniting mass participation by creating inclusive opportunities for people to get involved in nature-based activities
Green Infrastructure – implementing a range of projects drawn from Pembrokeshire Towns
Green Pembrokeshire – developing landscape scale habitat management and promoting regenerative provisioning activities (e.g. sustainable agriculture).
Sowing the Seeds – a small grants scheme designed to stimulate creative ideas and champion innovation around nature’s contribution to people
An initial steering group meeting was held and a framework for the Heritage Lottery Bid developed which is pending steering group approval.
Although this was one of the two NRW funded projects, PAVS as the lead organisation has made a commitment to funding this work for a further 12 months.
A bid to the Heritage Lottery fund to take forward work around the four themes was unsuccessful. In addition, the officer employed by PAVS to progress the Pembrokeshire Sustainable Natural Capital Forum moved out of the area in late 2021 therefore work to establish the forum stalled due to lack of capacity within PAVS. However, PAVS remain committed to continuing this work and in the meantime have used the PSNCF network as a means of disseminating information about various projects and initiatives that are currently running or are about to be launched in the County.
Links were made with the local lottery funded Together for Change programme to support delivery on the Communities themed elements of the Plan. Research outcomes from this programme will contribute to the development of robust community level datasets for the new system being developed regionally by the PSBs/RPB. As part of this work, a Pembrokeshire Engagement Group was established, whose focus will be on engaging more effectively with citizens and communities around the next Well-being Assessment and subsequent Well-being Plan
The Pembrokeshire Engagement Group continues to meet regularly to plan and co-ordinate engagement activity for the Well-being Plan.
The PSB Engagement Group was established in August 2021 to lead on consultation and engagement activity for the Well-being Assessment and beyond.
Through this group the PSB became involved in Project Dewi in January. This project was initiated by the Co-Production Network for Wales who have been supporting PSBs in the region with co-production and engagement expertise in the development of our Assessments and will continue to work with us to foster an environment of continuous engagement through to the end of the project in 2026.
The aim of this project was to build relationships between the PSB and town and community councils through One Voice Wales and projects such as the Community Well-being and Resilience (CWBR) Project led by PLANED, to build our awareness of the different opportunities and challenges that our communities face.
The CWBR project worked in partnership to support Town & Community Councils in 12 communities. Additional outcomes were;
In addition, monthly evening meetings were held with town and community councils between January and April 202, supported by PCC in partnership with PAVS and PLANED, to consider ways in which we can work together better and more effectively.
There was a positive response from the town and community councils to this initiative, and a dedicated support officer role has been established to continue the work going forward.
The CWBR project as funded by LEADER came to an end in June 2021 and a final evaluation was undertaken and shared widely. Resources were produced including templates, guides, and other documentation which are freely available to support future working with communities, and in particular Town and Community Councils. The project continues to run in its next phase with funding from the National Lottery and WCVA.
The focus of this project was for the PSB to take an active role in promoting the Welsh Government’s Personal Learning Account Scheme and and the Kickstart Scheme launched in the Autumn of 2020, plus any other schemes, and to take advantage of them wherever possible.
Two of the three Gateway Organisations in Pembrokeshire for the Kickstart Scheme were PSB members (Pembrokeshire College and Pembrokeshire County Council). In addition, several PSB member organisations made use of the scheme, including Pembrokeshire County Council and Pembrokeshire Coast National Park Authority.
The number of Kickstart opportunities in Pembrokeshire rose from 211 in April 2021 to 453 in June 2021, with the number of starts on the scheme rising from 28 in April 2021 to 132 in June 2021.
One young person in Pembrokeshire who was successful in taking up a place on the scheme stated that “being unemployed since graduation my mental health had really taken a dip, I started to wonder if things would ever improve for me work wise but I applied for a Kickstart job vacancy and went for interview and was offered a job with more money and responsibility that the one I’d applied for, they clearly saw something in me which increased my confidence, I’ve been doing the job now for 2 weeks and I’m really enjoying everything about being in work and being part of a team, this opportunity has made such a difference to me”.
An employer support event was held in January 2022 to support employers post-covid and signpost them to business support and assistance and in identifying future employment challenges within the county.
A number of PSB Partners were involved in the Kickstart Scheme until it ended in March 2022, including Pembrokeshire College and Pembrokeshire County Council.
The purpose of this project was to bring together PSB organisations to share lessons learnt and best practice around how they support the well-being of staff who are working from home, are furloughed or who at risk of redundancy and also to share thoughts around how new staff will be supported going forward, including incorporating virtual employment support.
The culmination of this project was a workshop for PSB member HR professionals attended by eight PSB organisations. The purpose of the workshop was to discuss what support had been provided for employees around good practice in relation to mental health, lessons learnt over the last 12 months and changes to the way organisations might operate going forward.
Some of the key activities taking place across PSB member organisations included;
All partners involved acknowledged that the experience of Covid has taught us that we can do what first might seem impossible and also that there is a need to review working practices, within a hybrid / agile type model of both onsite and homeworking solutions, with wellbeing at the centre of such operational plans.
The workshop held in June 2021 signalled the end of this project, however, it has provided HR representatives within PSB partner organisations with a network to take forward further work in the future.