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Dadl Westminster Flynyddol Senedd Ieuenctid y Deyrnas Unedig

Joanna Stallard, Ysgol Dinas Brân

UK Youth Parliament’s Annual Westminster Debate

Joanna Stallard, Ysgol Dinas Brân

UK Youth Parliament’s Annual Westminster Debate

by Joanna Stallard, Ysgol Dinas Brân

 

On Friday, November the 14th, I had the honour of being 1of 24 young people in Wales to attend the UK Youth Parliament's annual Westminster Debate organised by Mr Speaker John Bercow in conjunction with the British Youth Council.

On Thursday, along with four other young people from North Wales, I went down on the train to London where we met the group from the south for a meal and catch up - all expenses paid by the BYC - before getting a good night's sleep in a central hotel, ready for an early start the following morning.

After a hearty breakfast, we set off promptly to register in Parliament at 9am, there some of our group had the chance to grab a second breakfast, however for myself and Avery - who had the prestigious role of being our lead speaker in the Living Wage debate - we were quickly swept away to a formal reception with the Rt Hon William Hague MP, Richard Benyon MP and the Rt Hon John Bercow MP.  There we had a photo opportunity and were able to engage briefly in conversation with these notable figures.

We then made our way to the chamber, I felt daunted but equally inspired after that unexpected exchange.  Luckily, the commemorative speech was first on the agenda, after the parliamentary welcome, so I didn't have enough time to allow fear to completely consume me.  As the Speaker John Bercow called out each name, I could feel myself shaking as nerves began to build up, I was very aware of what an honour it was to be sat in the hallowed chamber at all, let alone on the front bench meters away from the dispatch box, where so many of my heroes had stood to make iconic speeches previously!  This was a once in a lifetime opportunity and a privilege, I knew I could not let myself or my family down.  This determination took over as I heard my name called and I made my way over to the dispatch box where I would deliver my message.  As I arrived there, I felt all of my worries disintegrate, my dream was becoming a reality, I was in awe and loved every second of it.  Across from me I could see William Hague, former secretary of state for Wales, nodding with encouragement as I relayed a story he was clearly familiar with; the story of a soldier, Elis Humphrey Evans aka Hedd Wyn.  I tried to incorporate a few sentences in Welsh, as it was important – it being my mother tongue - to have it incorporated in the Welsh contribution.

The positive response my story received left me feeling elated and inspired.  It confirmed my prior beliefs that politics might be a career I'd like to pursue in the future.  I wanted to do it again, to say more, but of course, the time people had to speak was limited, I had been lucky to be among the few who did have the chance to speak and I knew the majority of those who'd wanted to speak had not been fortunate enough, so I was grateful that I had been able to do so thanks to the Welsh competition.

It is thanks to my school council and the former Welsh youth parliament (Funky Dragon) that I was able to get involved in this event. I am sad that the funding for the Funky Dragon has been cut and I hope this decision may be overturned. I cannot thank those who helped me enough for having catalysed what I hope will be a successful career in politics in the future.

Dadl Westminster Flynyddol Senedd Ieuenctid y Deyrnas Unedig gan Joanna Stallard, Ysgol Dinas Brân

Ar Ddydd Gwener 14 Tachwedd cefais y fraint o fod yn 1 o 24 o bobl ifanc o Gymru i fynychu Dadl Westminster Flynyddol Senedd Ieuenctid y Deyrnas Unedig a drefnwyd gan Mr Llefarydd John Bercow mewn Cydweithrediad â Chyngor Ieuenctid Prydain.

Ddydd Iau, ynghyd â phobl ifanc - o Ogledd Cymru, euthum i lawr ar y trên i Lundain lle wnaethom gyfarfod y grŵp o'r De am bryd o fwyd a dal i fyny – y treulian wedi’u talu gan y BYC - cyn cael noson dda o gwsg mewn gwesty canolog, yn barod ar gyfer cychwyn yn gynnar y bore wedyn.

Ar ôl brecwast swmpus, cychwyn yn brydlon i gofrestru yn y Senedd am 9 yb.  Gwnaeth rhai o'n grŵp fachu ar y cyfle am ail frecwast.  Ond I mi ac Avery - ein siaradwr arweiniol yn y Ddadl Cyflog Byw – cawsom ni ein sgubo ymaith yn gyflym i dderbyniad ffurfiol gyda'r Gwir Anrhydeddus William Hague AS, Richard Benyon AS a'r Gwir Anrhydeddus John Bercow AS.  Yno cawsom gyfle ffoto a sgwrs gyda’r ffigyrau nodedig hyn.

 

Yna, gwnaethom ein ffordd i'r siambr.  ‘Roeddwn i'n teimlo’n ofnus ond yn ysbrydoledig ar ôl y cyfnewid annisgwyl hwn.  Yn ffodus, roedd yr araith coffaol yn gyntaf ar yr agenda ar ôl y croeso seneddol, felly nid oedd ofn wedi fy llwyr nghuro.  Wrth i’r Llefarydd John Bercow allw allan pob enw, gallwn deimlo fy hun yn crynu gyda nerfau.  ‘Roeddwn yn ymwybodol iawn o'r anrhydedd o gael eistedd yn y siambr gysegredig hwn yn y lle cyntaf, heb sôn am fod ar y fainc ffrynt, dim ond ychydig belter i ffwrdd o’r ‘blwch anfon’, lle roedd llawer o fy arwyr wedi sefyll i wneud areithiau eiconig yn y gorffennol!  Roedd hwn yn gyfle unwaith am byth ac yn fraint, ni allwn adael fy hunan na fy nheulu i lawr.  Cymerodd y penderfyniad hwn fi drosodd fel cafodd fy enw ei alw allan ac wrth i mi wneud fy ffordd draw at y ‘blwch anfon’ lle fyddwn yn cyflawni fy neges.  Wrth i mi gyrraedd yno, roeddwn yn teimlo fy holl bryderon yn diflannu a daeth fy mreuddwyd yn realiti a mwynhaeais pob eiliad ohono.  Ar draws oddi wrthyf gallwn weld William Hague, Cyn-Ysgrifennydd Gwladol Gymru, yn nodio gydag anogaeth wrth i mi gyfleu stori gyfarwydd hanes y milwr, Elis Humphrey Evans, aka Hedd Wyn.  Ceisiais gynnwys ychydig brawddegau yn y Gymraeg – roedd hyn yn bwysig – oherwydd iddi fod yn famiaith i mi.  .

Gadawodd yr ymateb cadarnhaol i fy stori fi’n hapus iawn ac yn ysbrydoledig a chadarnhau effallai mai gyrfa gwleidyddol fydd i mi yn y dyfodol.  Roeddwn eisiau ei wneud eto, i ddweud mwy, ond roedd y amser yn brin.   Roeddwn wedi bod yn lwcus i fod ymhlith yr Ychydig gafodd y cyfle i siarad ac roeddwn yn gwybod fod rhan fwyaf o’r rheini oedd wedi eisiau siarad wedi bod yn anlwcus.  Roeddwn mor ddiolchgar fy mod wedi cael y cyfle.  Diolch i’r gystadleuaeth Gymreig.


Hoffwn ddiolch i fy Cyngor Ysgol a'r Senedd Ieuenctid Gymreig (y Ddraig Ffynci) i’m galluogi i gymryd rhan yn y digwyddiad hwn.  Rwyf yn drist fod yr ariannu ar gyfer y Ddraig Ffynci wedi-ei dorri ac rwy'n gobeithio gall y penderfyniad hwn gael ei wrthdroi.  Ni allaf ddiolch ddigon i’r rhai helpodd fi ac a gatalyddiodd gyrfa lwyddiannus i fi mewn gwleidyddiaeth yn y dyfodol.

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