We rejoice in living near or in the Gower landscape with its protected status, we value the views and space that we have. Its is a place which has been shaped by man’s actions for many generations and hopefully will be kept in good order for generations to come. Much of what we see today is farm land which has been in the hands of families for many years. While it can seem a settled and peaceful environment all too often farms can be places of stress and difficulty.
Tir Dewi was formed in response to a growing and serious need for someone to help the farmers of West Wales in difficult times. Rev Canon Davies and Bishop Wyn (former Bishop of St David’s) agreed that something had to be offered and Canon Davies was tasked with establishing Tir Dewi as a helpline, listening service and sign-posting service.
They were given generous funding from two sources:
- The Church in Wales (Diocese of St David’s) – Tir Dewi provides a service with a focus on the Christian ethos with which it was founded. That doesn’t mean that it will only support farmers who are Christians or that all the volunteers are; it offers support to all farmers who need it and ask for it.
- Prince’s Countryside Fund – HRH The Prince of Wales is a passionate supporter of the countryside, agricultural and rural communities and established this fund in 2010 to improve the prospects of farms and the quality of rural life.
The service was originally launched in the summer of 2015 and, since then has actively helped hundreds of farmers and their families who were, in one way or another at crisis point Now with a website, freephone number and logo, Tir Dewi has a full-time member of staff to lead development, a person dedicated to work with volunteers in Dyfed; since July 2020 a new set of volunteers in Powys and since August 2020 a volunteer coordinator in North Wales. It has over 60 volunteers across Wales meaning that farmers and their families have more support available to them when they need it.
Tir Dewi is now launching in Gower with funding from the Austin Bailey Fund. This means that a faith based farming charity will be available to our local farming community working closely with other farming charities such as RABI which Patrice and Rachel have been working with at Gower New Life Church.
So what does Tir Dewi do ?
They provide somebody to talk to – Farmers can often feel isolated. When they have problems that feeling of isolation can grow until they feel they have nowhere to turn. The Freephone number is available between 07.00 and 22.00 every day and will be answered by someone who is ready to share problems, whatever they are, however big or small.
Tir Dewi does not pretend to have the answer to everything but often a chat is the first step to a solution.
Tir Dewi can help to untangle your problems, help farmers to prioritise and then, even help to resolve them.
If more help is needed, Tir Dewi have a strong network of specialists from across aspects of farming to whom they can turn.. Tir Dewi will make the introductions and stay with framers for as long as they want Tir Dewi to be involved.
Tir Dewi can act as an advocate, supporting farmers to communicate with those involved in their problems and even accompany farmers on meetings if would help. This might include suppliers, customers, banks, finance companies or advisors.
Volunteers are now needed to support the launch of Tir Dewi
This might be anything from spending time at a Livestock Market telling farmers about Tir Dewi to answering the Helpline or even working with individual farmers to help resolve their problems. If you feel you have the skills and time to do any of these then please get in touch.
Please Tell farmers about Tir Dewi
We need to let farmers know that we are out there and that we might be able to help. Take the opportunity to talk about Tir Dewi wherever possible. Farmers are often isolated and reluctant to tell anyone that they have a problem; telling them about Tir Dewi could give them the opportunity they need to begin to find a solution. Contact Us: firstname.lastname@example.org or 0800 121 4722
The Gower Ministry area provides the ideal platform for Tir Dewi given the coverage that it has across the communities of Gower. Over the next few weeks and months publicity material will be made available while direct mail shots will go to every farm in Gower. While there will be no Gower show this year we still hope that the news about Tir Dewi will spread far and wide. Your support is always appreciated and do get in touch if you would like to get involved or know somebody who might consider being a volunteer for Third Dewi