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Innovative resource celebrates the multicultural history of Wales

26 Mar 2024 3 minute read
Workshop at Ysgol Gymraeg Pwll Coch in Cardiff run by Natalie Jones

A new online resource ‘Brethyn Cymru’ has launched to help teachers and students explore Wales’ multicultural history as part of the Welsh Government’s vision to ensure an anti-racist Wales by 2030.

The project has been devised by Peniarth, publisher of books and education resources at the University of Wales Trinity Saint David.

‘Brethyn Cymru’ is a Welsh Government funded resource that contains information about 25 key individuals and events within Welsh history, giving Welsh teachers and learners the opportunity to explore their multicultural history as a nation.

Welsh histories

There is the story of individuals such as Angela Kwok, an advocate of the Chinese community; The community of Penrhos, which has been home to Polish families in Wales since The Second World War; the musician and storyteller Abram Wood, who was the head of a famous Romani family; and Italian prisoner of war Mario Ferlito.

This resource was developed following Professor Charlotte Williams’ report commissioned by the Welsh Government.

It was recommended in the report that cross-cutting resources and materials should be created to match Curriculum for Wales, in order to learn and teach about diversity in Wales past and present.

Teacher in class. Image: University of Wales Trinity Saint David

Different versions of the resource have been created for the primary and secondary sectors, and five copies of the poster will be sent free of charge to every school in Wales. The QR code on the poster will give access to wider information digitally on Hwb, and both parts can be used as a trigger for discussion and to stimulate further work.

On March 22, an official launch was held for the resource, with a workshop at Ysgol Gymraeg Pwll Coch in Cardiff run by Natalie Jones.

Natalie who is S4C’s Education Content Executive and one of the authors of Brethyn Cymru says: “It is a privilege to have been part of this project, and to be able to tell the story of two important people in the history of Wales, namely John Ystumllyn and Iris de Freitas.

“It is so important that the children of our nation learn about the important role of each individual on the timeline and the influence they have had on us all.”


Catrin Alun, Language, Literacy and Communication Leader at Ysgol Gymraeg Pwll Coch added: “A resource as attractive as the Brethyn Cymru poster and the activities that have been prepared for each of the individuals are absolutely wonderful.

“What a great way to celebrate international influences on Welsh life, and the influence of the Welsh on visitors and immigrants!

“We are lucky at Ysgol Pwll Coch that the whole world gathers here, and that the cultures and religions of the world are part of our unique fabric.

“The children of Pwll Coch and other schools in Wales will benefit so much from seeing the influence of these individuals on the fabric of their lives. Thank you, Peniarth!”

Catrin Evans-Thomas, project manager with Peniarth, said: “We are so proud to be able to share this exciting resource with all teachers and learners in Wales.

“A great team has come together to write and create a record of all the people who have influenced the historical path of Wales, and each of them is an important thread in the fabric of our nation.

“It will be great to see them displayed on the walls of all schools in Wales soon.”

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