Coleg Gwent students were officially recognised for their work on commonwealth projects in Wales recently.
Actor, writer and musician Boyd Clack, who wrote and starred in TV series High Hopes, visited a group of Independent Living Skills (ILS) students at Coleg Gwent’s Crosskeys Campus on Thursday November 21 and presented certificates on behalf of the Royal Commonwealth Society (RCS) Wales.
During October, ILS students Danielle Oak and Samuel Preece attended a Buckingham Palace reception thanks to their winning entry for an essay competition organised by the RCS. In recognition of their achievements RCS patrons Boyd Clack, Kirsten Jones and Chairman of RCS Wales Rogiero Verma presented Danielle and Sam with certificates for the PKV Commonwealth Essay Competition Prize for their poem entitled ‘I Knew This Was My Moment’.
Danielle and Sam, who have learning difficulties, penned the poem about fundraising they took part in for Ty Hafan Children’s Hospice. Their creative efforts were highly praised by RCS competition judges, and both students were invited to a Buckingham Palace reception on youth, education and the commonwealth on October 18 this year.
Crosskeys Campus Head of School for Care and ILS Debbie Field said: “Over the last few years our ILS students have thrown themselves into fundraising and raising awareness for local and national causes and also taken part in two fantastically creative Commonwealth projects.
“The Commonwealth projects have opened so many doors for students and we’re extremely grateful to the RCS for their support. We feel very privileged to have had the opportunity to meet such wonderful people and attend such high-profile events, and of course extremely proud to have represented Wales on a global stage.”
In 2012, a video message from Coleg Gwent’s ILS students was selected from over 80,000 worldwide entries to be among 60 pieces presented to The Queen in a time capsule to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee.
Students were proud to meet The Queen during a presentation ceremony for the Jubilee Time Capsule project in November 2012, and were also invited to the RCS Christmas carol service in Westminster Abbey last year.
ILS Tutor Victoria English said: “The students were thrilled to meet The Queen and see inside the Palace and I was incredibly proud to accompany the students for such prestigious events and to have their all hard work acknowledged.”