The Commissioner’s work programme relating to the third sector in Wales
The Commissioner believes that the third sector’s contribution is vital in fulfilling the vision identified in the strategic plan 2013-15. The Commissioner has therefore prepared a work programme which notes the following aims:
- See the Welsh language at the heart of third sector Policy in Wales
- Educate third sector organizations on the implications of the Welsh Language (Wales) Measure 2011
- Encourage organizations to increase and align the provision of Welsh medium services in the third sector
- Encourage increased use of Welsh medium services in the third sector
- Encourage increased opportunities to volunteer and work through the medium of Welsh in the third sector
- Raise awareness of the freedom to use the Welsh language resulting from the Measure
The work programme is split in three parts. Part one outlines the Commissioner’s powers and responsibilities in relation to the third sector. Part two sets out the background and recognises the gaps and opportunities with regards to promoting the Welsh language in the third sector. The third part sets out the targets and the timetable for achieving these goals in partnership with the key stakeholders.
General information for third sector organizations
The Welsh Language Act 1993 does not place a direct statutory duty on third sector organizations to provide Welsh language services. However, many third sector organizations do provide bilingual services because:
- it is in keeping with their identity
- it is seen as good practice
- they want to provide a Welsh language service in order to respect the user’s language choice
- third sector organizations that have functions of a public nature may be required to prepare Welsh language schemes as part of a grant condition or contract with a public organization.
Some third sector organizations may be affected in the future by the Welsh Language (Wales) Measure 2011. More information about the statutory requirement on third sector organizations will be available as the standards in relation to the Welsh language come in to force.
Guidance for the third sector
As part of the Welsh Language Commissioner’s role under the Welsh Language (Wales) Measure 2011, the Commissioner will be holding a series of free training sessions for third sector organizations. This training will offer practical solutions and advice to enable organizations to plan, develop and deliver bilingual services to the public in Wales. Learn more about this training by clicking here.
How to prepare a Voluntary Welsh Language Scheme
Any third sector organization can adopt a voluntary language scheme.
Developing and implementing a Welsh Language Scheme is part of a wider equal opportunities and diversity policy. A Welsh Language Scheme should include:
- a statement of intent
- a description of steps to provide the services
- a timetable and implementation targets
Most organizations consider the development and implementation of a Welsh Language Scheme as a good opportunity to assess their current situation, and it helps their strategic planning in terms of achieving their targets.
1. The Welsh Language Commissioner’s work programme relating to the third sector in Wales 2013-15: link to the work programme on the right.
2. Welsh Language Scheme template for the third sector: templates for preparing a voluntary Welsh Language Scheme by third sector organizations. The template is available on the right.