Skip to main content






  1. Minutes
  2. Action points


SPG event on 16 October and findings from SPG restart meetings



Wavehill workshop






WG update
Keith update



Board report discussion

  1. Board report


End of meeting


Attendees - Members
Name Role
Keith Towler (KT) Interim Youth Work Board Chair
Sharon Lovell (SL) Executive Director for the National Youth Advocacy Service and Vice Chair, Council for Wales of Voluntary Youth Services (CWVYS)
Efa Gruffudd Jones (EGJ) Chief Executive of the National Centre for Learning Welsh
Eleri Thomas (ET) Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner for Gwent
Simon Stewart (SS) Dean of Faculty of Social and Life Sciences at Wrexham Glyndwr University
Jo Sims (JS) Youth Service Manager for  Blaenau Gwent
Welsh Government (WG) attendees
Name Role
Donna Lemin (DL) Senior Youth Work Strategy Manager
James McCrae (JM) Youth Work Strategy Manager
Gemma Roche Clarke (GRC) Head of Youth Work Strategy
Chris Jones (CJ) Deputy Director Support for Learners Division
Caitlin Doyle (CD) Apprentice, Support for Learners Division
Dareth Edwards Youth Work Policy Manager


Dusty Kennedy (DK) – Director of TRM Academy

Minutes and Actions from last meeting

KT, DL and SL to have a meeting about a future strategy for getting young people to engage with the group.

ET raised an issue where their server is blocking some emails from Welsh Government email addresses. Welsh Government will explore the issues here.

ET suggested individual meetings between board members and GRC, once GRC has begun her role in the team. JM to set these meetings up.

SPG Event – 16 October

JM gave an update on the progress for the event featuring all board members and all members of the SPG groups on the 16th October. The Board was in agreement with the proposed agenda.

ET stressed the need to ensure the event sits within the current National context surrounding Covid-19. The Board were clear that restarting the SPGs has picked up momentum again and the event needs to push forward this momentum whilst being mindful of this context.

Wavehill Workshop

The board received a presentation from Wavehill presenting the emerging findings from their research into developing a theory of change for youth work so far.

Welsh Government Update

DL advised that GRC will be replacing Michael Maragakis and will be starting soon. Claire Young will be picking up work on grants. Anisa Khan will be returning to the team following maternity leave, which will increase the capacity of the Youth Engagement branch within Welsh Government. DL to circulate an email to clarify everyone’s roles within the team.

DE advised that the Youth Work Excellence Awards on YouTube on Friday have achieved over 700 views so far. A lot of positive comments have been received from the sector and ET echoed these comments. EGJ suggested factoring in a digital element into future ceremonies as it made it far more accessible across the sector. SL suggested involving the minister next year DL advised that DE will be undertaking a project focused on case studies from the awards.

Keith Towler update

KT advised that he had recently attended a meeting of the Principle Youth Officers Group, the CWVYS executive group meeting, Sophie Howe (The Future Generations Commissioner for Wales) and Chris Llewellyn (Welsh Local Government Association). KT said these meetings have been productive and everyone has been engaged and on board with the points suggested. All offered support to the Board’s work.

KT said he has meetings coming up with Aled Roberts from the Welsh Language Commission (alongside EGJ), Lynne Neagle (Chair of the Children and Young Peoples Committee) and Kirsty Williams (Minister for Education).

KT advised that Welsh Government officials are currently working to set up a meeting between KT and the First Minister.

Board Report

The board focused discussions on ensuring the report captures their vision for the future direction of travel for youth work in Wales. KT stressed that this will be a clear movement of change for the youth work sector and the board was supportive of this approach. KT acknowledged the need for the document to be slimmed down from the current first draft and the need for the document to be impactful.

ET suggested aligning the report with the Welsh Government recovery plan, DL will work with CJ to follow up the possibilities on this.

KT requested comments on the draft to be returned to him by 21 October.