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Newport City Council has introduced innovative new handheld technology in conjunction with Yotta, a specialist software provider, to revolutionise the way its Streetscene and City Services department operates.

This new technology has enabled smarter links between customer requests and front-line service response and delivery. As soon as a member of the public reports any issue to the council, details of this can be sent to the nearest team member on the ground who can


then investigate further. Councillor Deborah Davies, Cabinet Member for Streetscene and City Services, said:

“The introduction of this technology has completely changed the way our teams can work. Not only is it enabling us to maximise our employees’ time, it’s reducing the environmental impact and providing cost savings.”

This project was delivered following a successful application to Welsh Government’s Invest to Save scheme and is one of several new measures by the council to improve, modernise and streamline its services.

Communities First have been running job clubs in Newport since July 2013. They were set up to help people with job searching and general employment support as well as CV development, advice on completing applications, interview skills and funding for employment related training.

A service user, known as HB, had attended the job club for around twelve months. As a single parent who had been out of work for a number of years, she came to the job club with a keen interest in retail, but did not think she could get a role in this sector. She lacked confidence and had limited computer skills and didn’t think she would get employment. She didn’t really know where to start when she first arrived.

The Communities First team helped her develop a good CV, assisted her with job searching and completing application forms. They also provided her with training courses and supported her by helping to build her confidence.

The following months saw a massive improvement in her skills, her confidence and self-belief. HB started to apply for roles more suited to her interests, and after a number of interviews she gained employment with Pandora, a luxury jewellery retail outlet.

“Job club has been fabulous for the 12 months I have been going there. Very helpful and also when not in job club, always here to help me with my job search. Thank you a lot everyone (Katie and Laura have been fab) I have a job at Pandora - 20 hours per week.”

They may be just the leftovers from your kitchen, but to the people at Biogen in Bryn Pica your food waste is a valuable fuel.

Wastesavers collects 17 tonnes of food waste in Newport every day. This gets sent off to Biogen where it is put into a large sealed silo and gently heated. The rotting food gives off methane gas which is captured and used to generate electricity. Biogen feeds the electricity produced from your food waste back into the grid – providing the power to supply 400 households every year.

After all the gas is extracted, what remains of the food waste is then turned into fertilizer through the process of pasteurisation to destroy any bacteria.

Last year, Wastesavers collected more than 4,000 tonnes of food waste from houses in Newport. This provided enough power to supply 400 houses with electricity for a year and enough fertilizer to grow wheat for more than 3,000 loaves of bread.

If you don’t use the food recycling service, Christmas is an ideal time to start.

Food waste is collected weekly. Do you really want those Christmas left overs hanging around for two weeks in your general waste, or would you rather they help create electricity and loaves of bread?

For further information on food waste and other recycling information visit


Usual day Fri 25 Dec Fri 1 Jan

Changed to Sun 27 Dec Sat 2 Jan

Normal collections will take place on 28, 29, 30 and 31 Dec and Monday 4 January.


Hundreds of residents are taking part in a trial aimed at making recycling household items much easier.

Some councils have found that giving residents a ‘trolley box’ can help.

The High Cross area of Newport has been chosen to trial the scheme because of their recycling habits – some are excellent recyclers, some recycle a bit and some residents are not so enthusiastic about recycling.

High Cross also has a good mix of housing types, a range of age groups ranging from elderly households to young families, plus a variety of streets, from busy main roads to quiet closes.

Since getting her job, her life has changed a lot. She has had the opportunity to sort out finances and her children are saying how much she’s changed.

“I am so much happier now - I couldn’t be out of work again. I love my job so much, and all the girls I work with. I’m working in the Cwmbran store at the moment but the management has offered me a job in Newport in the new Friars Walk store. They are fantastic with me and changed my store to suit me and my kids, which is great.”

“Communities First has changed my life. Your support and the courses and everything changed my life completely. I tell everyone how amazing you’ve all been to me and how I’ve got this job now. Thank you so much to everyone that has helped me.”

As a council, we know that not one size fits all which is why a trial is needed. The project is a joint one between the council and Wastesavers which was started on October 26.

Those households chosen to take part have received a trolley box and instructions and details of what is involved.

Anyone wanting to find out more about the trial can visit the website

There is a Facebook group residents can join.

Taking part is not compulsory but the council and Wastesavers hope as many people as possible will give it a go.

There are three community based sessions per week in local libraries and community centres that cater for job seekers ages 16 years upwards.

• Shaftesbury Community Centre: Mondays, 1–3pm

• Bettws Library: Tuesdays, 1.30 – 3.30pm

• Malpas Court: Thursdays, 12.30 – 2.30pm

There is also a Youth Job Club which runs on a Tuesday at Newport City Homes Offices, Bettws, 11am –12pm

8 For more news visit MATTERS DECEMBER 2015

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