Focus on local action group (LAG) member - Rachael Aka
Rachael joined Swansea LAG after seeing an advert online looking for new members.
In August 2020 I joined Swansea LAG, after seeing an advert online looking for new members. I decided to apply with the aim of contributing to the sustainability, biodiversity and resilience of the rural communities in Swansea, especially Gower, where I live.
Many years ago I studied Rural Resources Management at university and was excited to have the opportunity to apply this knowledge and passion in a working context. Previously I had spent several years investing in my family before returning to work within the third sector as a volunteer coordinator. Joining the partnership has been a huge learning curve for me, challenging at times, not least getting to know some of the jargon and processes the partnership has to go through but also very rewarding.
Having virtual meetings, because of Covid restrictions, has meant it has taken longer for me to get to know people but also proved very advantageous in terms of enabling me to attend alongside my other commitments. As restrictions decreased, so the opportunities to attend site visits increased and have proven to be most beneficial. These have giving me the opportunity to engage with people and projects at a grass roots level and see some of the wonderful things happening within our locality.
As my children get older I want to keep growing my knowledge, developing my network and myself, and do something to contribute positively to the community and environment I live in. My time on the partnership has been instrumental in helping me take steps and knock on doors I didn't think I could. Being on the LAG has given me courage to take steps to forward in my career. Proving that it is never too late to invest in your dreams, invest in yourself and shape your future, all while supporting the community and environment you live in!
I can only encourage those who might be considering joining Swansea RDP to take a step! If you are prepared and looking to invest your time in supporting and developing the sustainability, resilience and biodiversity of our rural wards in Swansea, then go for it.
Find out more about the role of LAG members and how you can get involved: The RDP in Swansea