Winner of the Margaret Jones Award 2017 Announced27-April-2017
The Margaret Jones award winner for 2017 has been anounced as Tara Price (pictured) from Llanelli.
Tara’s story stands as a testament to her own power of conviction as well as the power of learning – where she has overcome many challenges along the way.
Tara was involved with probation for many years where excess alcohol played its part, and in 2005, she was caught up in a fire incident where she suffered severe burns, as well as resulting anxiety, depression and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
Despite these challenges, Tara pushed herself onwards.
Tara attended her first learning programme five years ago with our learning partner Wales Community Rehabilitation Company (operated by Working Links) as part of a court order. This opened up a new world to her and Tara quickly learned that she was able to achieve anything that she set her mind to.
Tara continued to focus on learning whilst battling with her personal challenges, progressing to a point where she recognised the benefits of learning and how it can help others; Tara is now ready to gain the Award in Education and Training (AET) qualification to enable her to teach others.
According to Probation Officer, Sian Waters, “Tara’s confidence has soared to the point where she is also now volunteering in the role of administrator of Ail Gyfle an upcycling / recycling project based in Llanelli, and we are accessing funding to employ her on a part time basis. We are currently looking to link this experience to a Level 2 or 3 apprenticeship.”
“Tara’s attitude and the change in her behaviour and her ability to be a role model is plain for all to see. She is now open to change and spends time nurturing others and encouraging them in the way she was supported. She is an inspiration.”
Sian continues, “She has come through the system that she now supports. Her newly qualified skills are put into use in Ail Gyfle and the Level 3 AET will enable her to deliver courses to those within the Criminal Justice System who attend Ail Gyfle - facilitating others to make the changes needed in their lives. Tara is living proof that the system works and is a shining light in the organisation.”
Tara has also seen improvements in other areas of her life. She now has the support of family where her relationship with them is much better. And where she recalls how dysfunctional she once was, Tara now proudly proclaims that ‘people can change’ where her son now sees ‘a better side to his mother’. Her social skills are also now much improved and she is more assertive with those around her.
According to Probation Officer Sian, “Tara has come such a long way since we first met. She can be proud of her achievements.”
“Tara would say I know, I’ve been there and I could never picture myself where I am today, happy, working with a lovely team and enjoying what I do.” Well Tara now finds herself doing just – a testament to all her efforts as well as those around her. And long may it continue.