Our Projects and Partners
Boys' and Girls' Clubs of Wales is undertaking various projects to ensure that our members have as many opportunities as possible to gain new experiences and develop new skills and that our member clubs can continue to develop as an important part of their communities. Some of our projects are taking place in cooperation with different partners.
Please see below a list with our current projects.
Duke of Edinburgh Award
The Duke of Edinburgh Award is a youth achievement award for young people between 14 and 24 years. Awards can be achieved in the three levels Bronze, Silver and Gold with different durations and in various sections including Volunteering, Physical, Skills, Expedition and Residential. Awards not only increase the young person’s chance to get a good job or a place at university but participants also get the opportunity to try out something new, develop new skills and make friends for a life time. We are promoting the Duke of Edinburgh Award to the young people in our affiliated clubs to give as much young people as possible the chance to benefit from the various advantages of achieving this award.
For almost two years now, we are a hosting organisation for the European Voluntary Service. This service is part of the European Erasmus programme and enables young people between 17 and 30 to work and live some time abroad in a European country. During 11 months, a young volunteer from Europe is working in our headquarters as the PR and Communications Officer and is responsible for our social media, newsletter and the website. In 2014/15 Alexandra from Spain has been part of our office team in Cardiff and currently the German volunteer Lioba is working for Boys’ and Girls’ Clubs of Wales.
The Erasmus programme is also financing some of our projects, including our current Not The Usual Suspects project which is informing young people about politics, and is enabling young people to take part in projects which they would not be able to afford otherwise.
The aim of the Big Lottery funded project “Get Sussed” is to support clubs in their efforts to plan and develop a sustainable future. Many of our clubs have premises which are not in use during the day time, when these empty buildings are a valuable wasted space and could be generating income from alternative day time use and providing a valuable asset to the local and wider community.
Our aim is to broker together key players from other agencies, such as CVCs, Wales cooperative, Trusts and Foundations and the private sector who can advise and support the development of social enterprise, create training and employment opportunities in the community and help develop business plans for our member clubs. A number of our clubs have already engaged with agencies such as Meithrin to open crèches and nurseries. Others have hired out their facilities during the day for sports activities, Sports Leader Training, local markets, food cooperatives and some have developed good social enterprise opportunities through creating “cottage” industries and utilising local skills and knowledge.
The clubs we are community working with are all prepared to rethink their strategies and take their ideas forward and “thinking outside the box” in terms of sustainable development is vital to the future of the organisation and its membership.
Get Sussed project
Millennium Volunteers is encouraging young people between 14 and 24 to volunteer to help within the community and is providing recognition for the voluntary work through certificates and awards for 50, 100 and 200 hours of volunteering.
During the past months we have organised three residentials as part of our Erasmus funded Not The Usual Suspects project which aims to involve young people in learning about politics and to illustrate them the importance of their participation in political questions.
On the residentials a group of 30 young people and leaders took part in various workshops about politics, including a visit at the Senedd in Cardiff, and got the opportunity to try out different outdoor activities such as climbing, hiking and canoeing. The highlight of the project was a Not The Usual Hustings event at the Infinity Trampoline Park in April where 5 politicians from Plaid Cymru, Green Party, Liberal Democrats, UKIP, Welsh Labour and Welsh Conservatives discussed issues and questions from and with young people. Click here to see the report about the event. The last residential of the project will take place in London in October with a group of young leaders.
Not The Usual Suspects
Our Founders and the First World War
We have recently received a HLF Grant and a donation from the Gwendoline and Margaret Charity to start a new BGCWales heritage project called ‘Our Founders and the First World War’. The project is an opportunity for young people to step back in time and relive the life of a soldier in the trenches, visit fun and fascinating museums, research the connection between your village and the First World War and much more. As part of the project, young people have already helped to set up an exhibition about the history of the Temple of Peace which was commisioned by our founder, Lord David Davies, Llandinam, and the Book of Remembrance and one of our youth clubs, Penysarn Youth Club, researched the lives of 17 young men who died during the First World War (click here to find out more about their heritage event). If anyone would like to get involved please contact us via email firstname.lastname@example.org or call the office on 02920 575705.
In cooperation with the national broadcaster S4C we organised a film making competition for our affiliated clubs with the chance to win £500 for the club. Young people in the two categories 11-15 and 16-25 had the chance to create a short film between 1.5 and 3 minutes on the theme "Young, Welsh and...". The short film had to include the Welsh language or could be mute (eg animation). Clubs uploaded their films online so that 3 judges could choose which ones should be shortlisted. The judges were Sioned Wyn Roberts, Children and Learners Commissioner for S4C, Kieran Roberts one of our BGCWales Young Volunteers and Nathan Wyburn, an Artist famously known for using food instead of paint when creating his celebrity portraits. Shortlisted videos were uploaded onto the S4C website and then a public vote decided which videos would win the £500 for its club.
The project aims were to get young people to think about what was important to them. It could be anything from sports, mental health, politics to a trip to the beach anything the young people felt passionate enough to make a short film about. Basic training, such as filming techniques, was provided by BGCWales staff members Jonathan Price and Cathryn Evans at the S4C headquarters. We wanted to ensure that the young people, young volunteers and club leaders had a good understanding of filming in order to get the most out of this project.
S4C Film making competition
Sports Leaders Course
We are delivering a wide range of Sports Leaders Courses for young people and leaders and aim to raise their participation in community sports. Please click here to find out more about our last Sports Leaders Course which was held at Ynyshir and Wattstown Boys’ and Girls’ Club.
StreetGames is a charity that was set up to provide disadvantaged young people with more sporting opportunities and to change these young people’s lives and communities with the help of sports. This Doorstep Sport takes place at the right time, at the right place, in the right style and for the right price in disadvantaged areas.
We are frequently taking part in events organised by StreetGames with groups of young people from our youth clubs, such as the annual residential at Brathays where the young people took part in various outdoor activities and workshops. Some of our clubs became Doorstep Sport Clubs or got involved in the UsGirls programme to provide sporting opportunities within the community and thanks to frequent StreetGames Network meetings we got the change to develop new partnerships with like-minded organisations. Additionally, we are currently hosting a full time volunteer in North Wales, Josh Evans, who will gain hands on youth work experience, as well as a raft of Level 2 qualifications over the coming months as part of his placement.
UsGirls is a programme by StreetGames which aims to encourage girls and young women to participate more in sport and physical activities, especially in disadvantaged areas.
We are frequently taking part in “UsGirls Rocks!” Festivals in South Wales with a group of girls from our member clubs where the participants get the chance to try out taster sessions in various sports and our North Wales office is regularly involved in the organisation of "UsGirls Rocks!" Festivals. You can read a report about their last “UsGirls Rocks!” Festival in Rhyl here.
Our North Wales office is running weekly UsGirls sessions which are open to every girl aged 11+ and free to attend. Sessions in Llandudno are taking place every Monday between 4 and 5pm at Ty Hapus Sports Hall and sessions in Denbigh are organised every Thursday between 6 and 7pm in Denbigh Hwb. Please click here to find out more about our recent UsGirls activities in North Wales.
We are organising annually youth exchanges with our international partners to enable young people the opportunity to gain international experiences and to learn more about other cultures. This year the 13th Youth Exchange with our German partners from the TSV Eltingen will take place in North and South Wales. The application for the exchange is already closed. You can read last year’s report about the youth exchange here.
Youth Work training
We are working together with the YMCA Community College to provide leaders and volunteers with the opportunity to take part in Youth Work training and to achieve the Agored Cymru Level 2 Award in Youth Work and the Agored Cymru Level 3 Certificate in Youth Work. The latest Level 2 Award was organised at Llwynypia Boys’ and Girls’ Clubs. Dates for upcoming trainings will be announced on the website and in our e-newsletter.