A YOUTH project which helps young people with disabilities take part in activities and gain confidence has won a top award.

The Derwen youth project has secured a top prize at the 2018 Youth Work Excellence Awards in Wales.

The project was set up by Gwynedd Council’s Youth Service and Derwen.

It helps promote confidence in disabled youngsters, helping them to take part in mainstream activities,

Regular sessions are held every week in Caernarfon. The scheme recently won the ‘promoting equality and diversity’ award at the Youth Work Excellence Awards 2018.

The project offers activities taught through informal educational experiences such as life skills including cooking, shopping and crossing the road, and online safety and sport.

Project leader Carina Elias, from Gwynedd Council, said: “The project has given many young people opportunities to gain qualifications in areas such as cooking, indoor sports, arts and drumming.

"This means that young people with disabilities have the same opportunity as others to attend county-wide award ceremonies to celebrate their success.

“The project is a link between the community within the school and outside community, and it bridges the two by organising additional actives such as an internal awards ceremony, where the young people design and create posters, and prepare refreshments for the evening.”

Councillor Craig ab Iago, Gwynedd Council’s cabinet member for Youth Services added: “It’s great to see the service being recognised at these national awards. Many congratulations to everyone involved with this important project.

“The work that is being done within the project is extremely important – it gives young people with disabilities very valuable opportunities and it is essential for their development as a person.

“As a Council, we want to enable young people with disabilities to develop their self-confidence and skills, so that they can go out into the world to live their lives in full, and I think Derwen’s support in invaluable for their development as individuals.

“Work is currently going ahead to re-model the county’s Youth Service, and we are looking forward to incorporating more activities like those which are part of the Derwen youth project into the rest of the service in the future.”

For further information about Derwen, visit: https://www.gwynedd.llyw.cymru/en/Residents/Health-and-social-care/Children-and-families/Integrated-Team-for-Disabled-Children.aspx