Bot building children help launch digital strategy
16th December 2019
Cabinet Member, Councillor Graham Breeze, joined children in a special 2-hour Coding Club session at the newly opened y Gaer building on Saturday (14 December) where the children put their digital skills to the test building and programming Lego WeDo bots as part of the launch of the council's first Digital Strategy.
Speaking at the launch, Councillor Breeze, Cabinet Member for Digital Powys 2019 - 2025: A digital transformation strategy said: "I'd like to thank the children here today for showing me their Lego bots and teaching me about coding and programming. To me, this club was the perfect setting for us to launch our exciting strategy."
The plan backed by the council's Cabinet has received funding of £908,564 from the Welsh Government, who have been impressed with the council's appetite to invest in digital technologies and be innovative in their use.
Councillor Breeze added: "I'd like to thank the Welsh Government for their investment and belief in our exciting and innovative approach. As a local authority, we will be working hard to ensure Powys is a place where people can connect, communicate and access the council services they need both quickly and efficiently.
"We will also be working with our partners to support the more vulnerable in our society to use digital tools and technologies that can help them to be independent, stay safe, keep well and be able to summon help easily. We want to create a legacy and support our communities to harness digital technologies to improve their quality of life. We also want to encourage our young people through education and sessions like this coding club, to gain the skills that they need going forward so they can step with confidence into adulthood as our digital world continues to expand."
Ness Young, Corporate Director for Resources and Transformation and Programme Sponsor said: "We are keen to stay ahead of the digital curve, pilot new technologies, evaluate them for colleagues in other authorities and share our experiences with others. The way local government works is changing rapidly and a whole range of digital tools will help us to make the most of opportunities to deliver for businesses, schools and residents who may need support with their health and social needs and can be given access and support where needed to access a growing range of digital tools to do so."
Tilly Boscott, Library Assistant at Brecon Library - now based in newly opened y Gaer building - has been running the coding club for the past few years and is keen to encourage young children to get excited about the digital world and help them learn coding skills. A number of libraries also run computer classes for those lacking confidence. See www.powys.gov.uk and click on "Find Nearest Library" to see what's on offer. Click on www.powys.gov.uk and "Digital Powys" for the strategy.