Adferiad Recovery is delighted to hear the recent news of the launch of Health Minister, Eluned Morgan’s plan to boost Welsh language in health and social care.
The plan, announced by the Welsh Government on 2nd of August, incorporates key elements from Welsh Government’s follow-on framework to the ‘More than just words’ strategy which was launched in 2016. The aim of the framework is to promote and support the use of Welsh language across health services, social services and social care and ensure that anyone who wants to can receive their care through the medium of Welsh.
The Minister’s vision is for a health and social care service where people are actively offered their care in Welsh. She has stated that at the core of the strategy is the principle of the Active Offer which places a responsibility on the health and social care providers to offer services through the medium of Welsh rather than patients or service users having to ask for it.
Adferiad Recovery welcomes the introduction of this plan and fully supports the initiative to encourage the provision of Welsh language health and social care services across Wales. We agree with the Health Minister that those trying to access these services are at their most vulnerable and therefore it is vital that they are given the choice to communicate with their service providers through the language in which they feel most comfortable.
As an organisation rooted in Welsh language and heritage, Adferiad strives to offer services in Welsh to those who want it whenever possible. We have already made efforts to be able to increase the provision of Welsh language services within our organisation by supporting our non-Welsh speaking staff members to access Welsh at Work courses and are currently seeking to organise residential training at Nant Gwrtheyrn
Adferiad’s Chair of the Board, Clive Wolfendale, is a keen advocate for the Welsh language, having started learning it on his arrival in Wales from Manchester as Assistant Chief Constable of North Wales Police. Last week he was honoured by the Gorsedd of Bards for his contributions to Welsh language and culture as well as to Social Welfare in Wales at their annual ceremony as part of Eisteddfod in Tregaron. In response to the recent announcement by the Health Minister, he said: “I am pleased to see this announcement from the Welsh Government. Embedded Welsh language provision is a key component of ensuring health and social care services across the country are locally responsive and striving for excellence. We look forward to supporting Health Boards and other authorities in the delivery of this initiative.”
Adferiad Life President, Elin Jones, who was also honoured by the Gorsedd in 2015 for her services to mental health awareness and the history of Wales, has been a key figure in the promotion of the Welsh language in the Third Sector, both as former Chair of the Hafal Board and in her current role as Life President. She added: “I know myself how daunting it is to seek support from health and social care services and how difficult it is to discuss very personal and sensitive issues in one’s second language. The needs of Welsh speakers should not be neglected due to language barriers. I am delighted by the progress Adferiad has already made in the provision of Welsh language services and we hope to continue improving on this in line with the Health Minister’s new plans.”