Eight lucky youths have been given the opportunity to take part in important volunteer work abroad as part of a new S4C series, Newid Byd (Change the World).
Over the past few months, Newid Byd has been looking for eight suitable youths between 14 and 16 years old. Over 200 young people applied to compete and according to the series producer, Mererid Wigley from Swansea-based Telesgop production company, the standard of the competitors was very high.
“Reading the applications was a very positive experience. Young people are often judged for not showing concern or interest in the world around them. But these applications were showing the complete opposite. It’s great to see so many young people who are hard working in their community, and feel strongly about environmental and social issues and work hard to raise money for their benefit,” said Mererid Wigley.
After an intense selection period, the eight finalists have been selected. During the Autumn, four of them will travel to Malawi and the other four to Cambodia to be part of volunteer projects, under the care of an experienced guide. The selected projects will help the people and environment in that part of the world, and it will offer an unforgettable challenge for the youngsters.
The environmental tasks will include monitoring and surveying animals, building hides to observe the wildlife and help with educational projects in eco-tourism villages. They will also help with work to re-plant native trees in rainforests which have been destroyed by illegal felling.
The community projects will give the youths a chance to immerse themselves in a different culture and give something back to the communities for their hospitality. The gang will help build beds at an orphanage and help the project of building a local school in Africa by producing their own bricks.
Mererid Wigley says, “The eight that have been selected all come from different backgrounds which mean each one already has a different perspective on the world. I look forward to seeing how they react to the challenges ahead. The hope is that they will inspire others to follow their example and set about helping their own communities.”
The final eight:
Lloyd Antrobus, 15 years, Buckley, Flintshire
Ioan Dafydd Williams, 16 years, Dinas Powys, Glamorgan
Teleri Wyn Davies, 14 years, Bala
Mali Ann Rees, 16 years, Cardiff
Yali Banton-Heath, 15 years, Corris, Machynlleth
Hannah Stevenson, 15 years, Cardigan
Danial Ellis Evans, 16 years, Llangefni
Aron Tudur Dafydd, 14 years, Silian, Lampeter