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Ammanford man receives a commendation from Dyfed-Powys

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056AN AMMANFORD man who was viciously attacked on a night out received a commendation from Dyfed-Powys Police Chief Constable Mark Collins.

He was presented with the surprise commendation at a presentation evening on Friday, January 6, at his beloved Cwmamman Football Club, of which Paul was team Captain at the time of the attack.

The event was arranged to mark the 10-year anniversary of the night that changed his and his family’s lives forever.

Paul Pugh, now aged 37, was left in a coma for two months and hospitalised for 13 months following an unprovoked assault in Ammanford, on January 6, 2007, for which four men were jailed.

The attack left him with severe brain injuries and was told he would never walk or talk again.  Ten years on and Paul walks with help and continues with rehabilitation.

Since the attack, Paul has used his story to campaign against alcohol-fuelled violence through the #PaulsPledge campaign. He visits schools, colleges, universities, youth clubs and sports associations throughout Carmarthenshire, Ceredigion, Pembrokeshire and Powys raising awareness of the dangers and consequences of alcohol, violence and the impact it can have on individuals and their families.

His campaign work is strongly supported by Dyfed-Powys Police and the Public Service Board’s Fair and Safe Communities Group.

Chief Constable Mark Collins said: “This is the first Certificate of Commendation I’ve awarded since returning to Dyfed-Powys as the Chief Constable. It’s a real privilege to present it to Paul for the hard work he has carried out throughout the Force area giving his very clear message about the effects of alcohol and drug abuse. It’s a very moving story and I feel humbled to have been there to present Paul with his commendation.”

Dafydd Llywelyn, Police and Crime Commissioner, said: “We’re here celebrating the work that Paul has been undertaking for a number of years to look at issues of violent crime linked to alcohol. It’s 10 years since the assault and he has been working hard to rehabilitate and he has undertaken an extensive amount of work to get the #PaulsPledge campaign message out to Dyfed Powys and I am in awe of the work that he has undertaken. It was great to be there to celebrate with Paul and be in the presence of the Chief Constable as he presented Paul with his commendation.”

Kate Thomas, Community Safety Manager, Carmarthenshire County Council, said: “We wanted to support Paul and getting his campaign against alcohol-fuelled violence out across the county and beyond. We provide funding for Paul to go out to the community to tell people about what the impact is of alcohol-fuelled violence and how to enjoy a safe night out. Paul is so deserving of this award. He is a brave and inspirational man who has decided to use what happened to him to work to make sure it doesn’t happen to anyone else. There’s no more powerful way of getting that message across other than to see Paul and hear him talk about his experiences.”

Paul Pugh said after receiving the award: “This is my life now. It’s my purpose and I will do all I can to prevent this from happening to anyone else because I don’t want to see anyone go through what me and my family have gone through again.”

Paul brought together family and friends at Cwmamman Football Club on the evening of the 10th anniversary of the attack, to share his story, talk about the #PaulsPledge campaign and the work he is doing to prevent this from happening to others and to celebrate how far he has come in the 10 years since the incident.

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Police launch public appeal following Carmarthenshire burglary

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DYFED-POWYS POLICE is investigating a burglary at a property in Ponthenry.

People broke into a shed at a home in Victoria Road at around 8.30pm on Monday, 31 October, before leaving after spotting a CCTV camera.

They returned at around 10.15pm and again at around 10.55pm.

During their raids they tooka green Wolf motocross helmet with a full face with a peak and line green motocross goggles.

Officers are appealing for help to identify two people they would like to speak to over the incident.

Anyone with information that could help officers with their investigation is asked to report it to Dyfed-Powys Police, either online at: https://bit.ly/DPPContactOnline, by emailing 101@dyfed-powys.police.uk, or by calling 101. If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or speech impaired text the non-emergency number on 07811 311 908. Quote reference: DPP/0756/01/11/2022/02/C. Alternatively, contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously by calling 0800 555111, or visiting crimestoppers-uk.org.

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Morrisons Foundation supports children’s charity with grant for vital equipment

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The Morrisons Foundation supports registered charities that make a positive difference. They recently awarded national children’s disability charity, Cerebra, based in Carmarthen, a grant of £11,109.

This will fund the creation of writing slopes through the Cerebra Innovation Centre, which is partnered with the University of Wales Trinity Saint David and designs wonderful toys and equipment to help children living with a brain condition to learn and play.

The writing slopes are designed to help children who struggle with posture and fine motor skills. They also aid children with writing, drawing and hand control. Ross Head, Product Design Manager at the Cerebra Innovation Centre explains;

‘The slopes include a lovely wipe-clean surface for children to experiment with mark making, their own set of pens and a clever lid-free pen store to remove the challenge of removing lids for some children. We are so lucky to be able to do what we do and funding like this is so important to allow us to push boundaries and provide vital equipment that looks beautiful.’

At the start of 2022, the Cerebra Innovation Centre highlighted that they anticipated the need for an additional 20 writing slopes for children. Cerebra Fundraising Manager, James Hay then worked with the grants team at the Morrisons Foundation, who were delighted to support this project. David Scott, Morrisons Foundation Trustee said:

‘Cerebra is dedicated to helping families who have a child with a brain condition to discover a better life together, that’s why I’m delighted that we’ve been able to provide this support. The specialised writing slopes will make a huge positive impact on children with sensory and mobility issues, providing a great opportunity to develop their skills, which will last a lifetime.’

Grants like this are a vital source of funding for Cerebra so that they are able to continue to support children living with a brain condition and their families who face challenges every day. The Cerebra Innovation Centre is one of the many support services provided by the charity that so many families have come to rely on. James Hay adds;

‘Thank you so much to the Morrisons Foundation for this generous grant! We are over the moon as we know how much this project will change young lives. These are particularly challenging times for charities and so this funding from Morrisons for the creation of 20 writing slopes is warmly welcomed.’

You can find out more about Cerebra and how they help children and families by visiting www.cerebra.org.uk 

Writing Slope
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White Ribbon campaign supported by Carmarthenshire County Council

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CARMARTHENSHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL says it is again showing its support for the White Ribbon campaign, which takes place on Friday, November 25 and is followed by 16 Days of Action.

White Ribbon is the UK’s leading charity engaging men and boys to end violence against women and girls.

While domestic abuse affects both sexes, the largest number of violent incidents involve men against women. But ultimately male violence against women is everyone’s issue, not just women’s.

The council was awarded White Ribbon UK accredited status for the first time in 2018 and is continuing to work to tackle such violence.

White Ribbon flags will be flying at County Hall in Carmarthen and town halls in Llanelli and Ammanford on White Ribbon Day (Friday, November 25). County Hall will also be lit up on the evening to show support.

The council is working alongside partners to raise awareness of the campaign across the county – from sports clubs, joint visits with the Police to licensed premises, our leisure centres and libraries to bus stations.

With this year’s White Ribbon Day falling on the same week as the start of the FIFA men’s World Cup, there has never been a better time to come together and start playing as a team to end violence against women and girls.

The council will be raising awareness of the campaign at special events including a Walking Football session at Amman Valley Leisure Centre on November 30 and at “An Evening with Sam Warburton” at the Lyric Theatre in Carmarthen on White Ribbon Day (November 25).

Cabinet Member responsible for Community Safety, Cllr Philip Hughes, said: “It’s vital that we raise more awareness about domestic abuse so that anyone affected can get help and support from one of our local services.”

Support locally can be found at: Threshold (Llanelli) on 01554 752 422 or www.threshold-das.org.uk; Calan DVS (Ammanford) on 01269 597 474 or www.calandvs.org.uk; Carmarthen Domestic Abuse Service on 01267 238 410 or www.carmdas.org and Goleudy on 0300 123 2996 or www.goleudyvictimandwitnessservice.org.uk or call the Live Fear Free Helpline on 0808 80 10 800 or visit https://gov.wales/live-fear-free for free advice and support 24/7

For more information on the White Ribbon campaign visit www.whiteribbon.org.uk

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