The Welsh Government has launched a consultation exploring how best to promote bus travel amongst young people so that they choose to travel by bus to access education, training work and leisure, and this is a chance to have your say.
Economy Secretary, Ken Skates, said: “I’ve been particularly keen to explore what appetite there is for extending the age of discounted travel up to 24 year olds, potentially allowing us to help more young people make the most of bus travel across Wales."
Rebecca Evans, Assembly Member for Gower, said: "Travelling by bus has a whole host of benefits. It is a greener, more sustainable choice, which helps reduce congestion and keep our communities moving. It is vital that young people themselves take this chance to tell us what would make them more likely to travel by bus."
The consultation will run until January 4th 2018, and is available on the Welsh Government website.
Come along on Friday 20th October between 9.30am and 3.30pm to pick up some early festive bargains the Canolfan y Bont's Christmas Sale.
There will be brand new clothes and toys for children, as well as bath and shower smellies and lots of other treats.
Rebecca Evans AM said: "Canolfan y Bont is a wonderful resource in the middle of Pontarddulais, and this is a chance to support the centre whilst also snapping up some great bargains and taking the chance to have a cuppa and and some cake in their lovely coffee shop."
Any money raised will go to support the work of the centre.
Gower's Assembly Member, Rebecca Evans AM, has welcomed a commitment by the Welsh Government to continue its Council Tax Reduction Scheme in 2018-19.
Last year, a result of the scheme, almost 300,000 vulnerable and low income households in Wales received a reduction in their council tax. Of these, 220,000 households paid no council tax at all.
Cabinet Secretary for Local Government, Mark Drakeford, said: “Despite the UK Government cutting our funding for the scheme by 10%, the Welsh Government has worked with local authorities to secure reductions in council tax for vulnerable and low income households. This has been supported by the £244m we have provided through our local government settlement each year."
Rebecca Evans AM, Assembly Member for Gower said: “The Welsh Government doesn't have to do this. It is making a deliberate and positive choice to support and assist people living in vulnerable and low income households who are struggling to make ends meet, and I welcome that approach.
"Across the border it's a different story. Low-income families in England are now paying on average £191 a year more in council tax than they would have if the UK Government hadn't made the choices that it has made there."
As autumn begins, making informed choices about your home energy usage is one of the best ways to save money on your bills. A warm home is so important, but sadly many people struggle to heat their homes, facing difficult choices between turning the heating on and buying food or paying other bills.
That is why, on October 20th, I am jointly hosting an energy advice drop-in surgery with Tonia Antoniazzi MP, at Forge Fach Community Resource Centre in Clydach. The event is free to attend and will run from 11am – 1pm. Please come along and find out about the range of assistance and support that is available to help you pay, and reduce, your bills – as well as taking the opportunity to arrange a free gas safety check which can detect issues such as boiler faults, gas and carbon monoxide leaks. We have teamed up with British Gas for this event, and their advisors will be on hand with lots of good advice.
Tackling fuel poverty is one of the top priorities for the Welsh Government, and we are committed to doing all we can. This is not easy, as Wales has some of the oldest and least thermally-efficient homes in Europe.
We are working to improve the energy efficiency of homes, as we know this is an important way to tackle fuel poverty in the long term by making homes easier to heat and keep warm, and reducing household energy bills. We are also investing to make sure that impartial advice and support is available to help people keep warm and save money.
Since 2011, over £217 million has been invested in Warm Homes, and this funding has had a significant impact on vulnerable households across Wales. It has provided advice to over 85,000 households and improved the energy efficiency of over 39,000 homes. Over 1,190 households have claimed new or additional benefits following a benefit entitlement check, averaging over £1,900 per household.
In addition to this, over 1,000 households have benefited from a referral for a Warm Homes Discount rebate on their electricity bill, equating to over £140,000.
The benefits aren’t just limited to cost savings. Warm Homes is also designed to ensure economic benefits for Wales in terms of employment and business opportunities. All of the energy efficiency improvements installed under our schemes have been delivered by Wales-based small and medium size businesses.
If you would like to find out whether you are eligible for help to keep warm this winter, please come along or get in touch with my office by calling 01792 899081 or e-mailing me via Rebecca.email@example.com
Across the UK, every day of the year, thousands of community transport staff and volunteers are helping people to stay independent, participate in their communities and to access vital services and employment.
Rebecca Evans AM, Assembly Member for Gower, met the team at Gower Voluntary Transport to see first-hand the positive impact the service is having on residents in the constituency.
Rebecca Evans AM said: “Community transport is about providing flexible and accessible community-led solutions in response to the needs of the local community.
"I was highly impressed by the service offered by Gower Voluntary Transport, which is a lifeline for many people. I would like to express my thanks to the volunteers for the incredible work they do providing people with transport to crucial appointments and to social events, for example."
Gower Voluntary Transport provides accessible transport for people in the Gower peninsula who cannot access public transport, including people who are older, disabled or otherwise housebound.
Rebecca Evans AM, is encouraging A-level students in her Gower constituency to take part in the Political Studies Association Schools’ Video Competition.
The competition, which is now in its seventh year, asks students to explore the question: “Fake News: Is this the end of facts?”
Groups of students are invited to submit short videos on this subject, examining what fake news is, what effect it may be having on the political landscape and what it means for expert opinion and ‘factual’ knowledge.
Rebecca Evans AM, said: “Fake news is big news, and this is a great way for young people to consider some of the real questions that face us as we navigate modern sources of information and opinion."
Shortlisted groups will be invited to Speaker’s House in the Palace of Westminster to discuss the ideas raised in their video with a panel of politicians, journalists and academics.
The winners of the Schools' Short Video Competition will receive their award at the PSA’s Annual Awards Ceremony in Westminster, and get a week’s work experience with the YouGov political team during their school holidays.
The deadline for entries is 12 noon 30 October 2017
Full competition details for 2017 and how to enter are published on the PSA’s website at: www.psa.ac.uk
Gower's Assembly Member Rebecca Evans and Member of Parliament Tonia Antionazzi, are opening up their offices to join MacMillan’s World’s Biggest Coffee Morning on Friday 29th September.
The World’s Biggest Coffee Morning is Macmillan’s biggest fundraising event for people facing cancer. People all over the UK host their own Coffee Mornings and donations on the day are made to Macmillan. Last year alone, Macmillan raised £29.5 million and this year they are aiming to raise even more.
Tonia Antionazzi MP is holding her coffee morning between 10am and 12pm, at her office, Ty Newydd, 17 West Street, Gorseinon. She looks forward to welcoming the Lord Mayor of Swansea, Siany from the Wave, and Kev Johns during the morning.
Tonia Antionazzi MP said: "I am so pleased to open my office this Friday for my first Macmillan Coffee Morning and am really looking forward to meeting with constituents. I am working to ensure everyone in Wales has access to the cancer treatment they need."
In the afternoon, between 1pm and 3pm, Rebecca Evans AM will hold her event in her office at 9 Pontarddulais Road, Gorseinon. Lotties Coffee Shop of Gorseinon have very generously donated some of their delicious cakes.
Mrs Evans said: “Macmillan has long been rightly recognised and applauded for their work with cancer patients and their families. With cancer touching all our lives in one way or another, I welcome the opportunity to do my bit to help raise funds to assist them in continuing their important work.”
As autumn begins, Rebecca Evans AM and Tonia Antionazzi MP, Gower's Assembly Member and Member of Parliament, are teaming up with British Gas advisors to hold a drop-in Energy Advice Surgery event to help constituents Stay Warm this Winter.
The drop-in offers an opportunity for constituents to ask questions and explore ways to get smart with their energy use, with advice from qualified British Gas advisors who will be available to discuss how to save money, keep your house warm and advise on the latest technology.
A local British Gas Smart Energy Expert, who is installing smart meters in homes across Gower, will also be at the event to offer information about smart meters and the benefits they can bring.
Rebecca Evans AM said: “It’s really important to be prepared for winter. I want everyone in Gower to understand what help is available for them, and for their family and friends.
"There is support available from the Welsh Government 'Warm Homes Nest' which provides all householders in Wales with access to advice and support to help them reduce their energy bills. This includes a referral for eligible householders for a package of free home energy efficiency measures such as a new boiler, central heating system, loft or cavity wall insulation, or renewable technologies.”
Tonia Antionazzi MP said: “Smart meters offer a range of benefits - automatically sending meter readings, and showing the amount of energy you are using and how much it is costing you – enabling you to keep an eye on your bills. With winter just around the corner, now is a great time to get smart meters installed, and this event gives you the opportunity to find out more.”
Olly Loosemore, Smart Energy Expert with British Gas said: ““I would encourage residents to come along and find out about the range of assistance and support that is available – such as arranging to have a free gas safety check which can detect issues such as boiler faults, gas and carbon monoxide leaks. We work with a range of partners to support people who are experiencing trouble paying their household bills and can help make homes in Wales warmer this winter.”
The Energy Advice Surgery will take place on Friday 20th October between 11am – 1pm, at Forge Fach, Clydach.
Rebecca Evans AM, Assembly Member for Gower, will be holding an advice surgery on Friday 22nd September, between 2pm – 3pm, at The Ostreme Centre, Mumbles.
If you have any problems or concerns, please come along to explore how Rebecca may be able to help. No appointment necessary.
Gower's Assembly Member, Rebecca Evans AM, has pledged her support for National Eye Health Week, which takes place 18 - 24 September 2017.
A new report published by the RNIB and high street opticians Specsavers shows that one in five people will live with sight loss in their lifetime despite at least half of all cases being avoidable.
Now in its eighth year, National Eye Health Week brings organisations and health professionals from across Wales together to raise awareness of the need for regular sight tests, and how lifestyle habits can affect sight.
In Wales, there are 106,980 people living with sight loss which is significant enough to impact their daily lives. This includes people who may not be wearing the right prescription glasses or contact lenses, people waiting for cataract operations, and people living with partial sight or blindness.
Approximately 250 people in the UK, including 3 people in Wales, lose their sight every day.
Ceri Jackson, Director RNIB Cymru said: “Sight is incredibly precious and we live in an increasingly visual world. It is the sense we fear losing the most yet many of us don’t realise how best to look after our eyes."
Rebecca Evans AM said: “Every day in Wales three people lose their sight, but at least 50 per cent of sight loss is avoidable with early detection and treatment. The most important thing people can do to look after their eyes is to go for regular sight tests, but research shows that more than 1 in 10 of us have never had our eyes tested.”