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Public Services Unite to Create a ‘Well Wales’, 02/12/16 [W]

Children in Wales has joined forces with a growing number of public and third sector organisations from across Wales in pledging to think and work together to secure a happier and healthier Wales.

Uniting under the Cymru Well Wales banner, organisations have committed to aligning activity and resources to tackle and prevent the issues that contribute most towards poor health and wellbeing in Wales.

Guided by a strategic leadership group of senior decision makers, Cymru Well Wales considers all available evidence to decide upon key priority areas for collaborative action.

Tracey Cooper, Chief Executive of Public Health Wales and co-chair of Public Health Wales, said: “Cymru Well Wales is a movement of motivated organisations that are committed to working together today to secure better health and wellbeing for the people of Wales tomorrow.

“Partners in Cymru Well Wales recognise that good health requires a whole-of society approach and that’s why organisations from across public life are coming together to tackle the issues that cause the greatest harms to the people of Wales.”

Partners in Cymru Well Wales are from a variety of sectors, including local authorities, government, health, housing, police, fire and rescue services, environment, education, workplaces, sports and the third sector.

Rebecca Evans, Minister for Social Services and Public Health, said: “Good health is not simply a result of good healthcare. Economic, environmental and social issues all have a significant impact on people’s long-term health and wellbeing.

“Through working together and aligning our resources, we can achieve our shared goal of sustainable health and well-being in Wales. That’s why I am delighted so many organisations have pledged to coordinate efforts to create a ‘Well Wales’.”

Cymru Well Wales’s first priority areas for action are: improving outcomes in the first 1000 days of life; reducing adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) in Wales; and tackling poverty in Wales by increasing employability.

Cymru Well Wales has committed to preventing Adverse Childhood Experiences in Wales by: making all public services in Wales able to respond effectively to prevent and mitigate the harms from ACEs, and by building protective factors and resilience in the population to cope with ACEs that cannot be prevented.

Speaking of Cymru Well Wales, Carl Sargeant, Cabinet Secretary for Communities and Children said: “The evidence on the negative impact of ACEs is overwhelming. I am focussing the work of my portfolio on preventing ACEs and reducing the long term impact on children who have experienced ACEs.

“We will continue to provide support for parents and children through our Flying Start and Families First and Supporting People programmes. These help to ensure people have a safe and secure home and are not at risk of becoming homelessness, tackle domestic violence, and help adults who suffer with mental health and substance misuse issues.

“My other priority is employability which in turn will boost prosperity. I want to see communities that have access to jobs and people with the right skills and support to fill them.  Employability is a key priority for tackling poverty and boosting the wellbeing of Wales.”

Cymru Well Wales’s First 1000 days collaboration focuses on ensuring that all activity being delivered to improve health in early life is harnessed in a coherent system, with everybody working in partnership to intervene earlier. The work to-date is being piloted in two sites, Wrexham and Torfaen.

Steve Thomas, Chief Executive of Welsh Local Government Association and co-chair of Cymru Well Wales, said: “Public bodies provide a range of preventative services that aim to improve and maintain well-being and contribute to supporting healthy communities, helping to tackle health inequalities.  By planning and working more closely together we believe we can deliver better outcomes for our citizens and making sure investment focuses on what works and delivers the required changes.”

Cymru Well Wales’s work on employability will contribute to a co-ordinated approach across public, private and third sectors to reshape employability support for job-ready individuals, and those furthest from the labour market, to acquire the skills and experience to gain and maintain sustainable employment.

The Cymru Well Wales partnership is underpinned by a set of guiding principles which partner organisations must agree to uphold. More information on the partnership can be found at www.wales.nhs.uk/cymruwellwales