I was pleased to host the launch of 2022s Great Daffodil Appeal last week. This is now the 10th year I have hosted the launch.

Each year, Marie Curie raises over a quarter of a million pounds in Wales through the Great Daffodil Appeal to fund their vital frontline palliative and end of life care services at their hospice in the Cardiff and the Vale, and their nurses and healthcare assistants across Wales, who provide vital support to people dying in their own homes.

This income also goes a long way to support the Wales Marie Curie Research Centre and the vital work that their research colleagues carry out to enable high quality palliative care in Wales, the UK and internationally.

The money raised by the appeal is fundamental to the work of Marie Curie and thanks to these funds and the huge contribution of supports, their vital work is able to change lives in Wales. Find out more at https://www.mariecurie.org.uk/daffodil

I regularly meet and liaise with Social Care providers in the Vale of Glamorgan who do such a fantastic job in caring in our Care Homes and in the community.

Their teams of staff have been dedicated to their work through these very difficult times. The Welsh Government has announced £96m investment to give tens of thousands of social care staff a £1,000 extra payment.

Social care staff who will be eligible for the real living wage from April will receive an additional £1,000 net payment as the Welsh Government invests in the sector.

The additional payment, which will be made to some 53,000 people, comes amid the worst cost-of-living crisis in decades.

Julie Morgan MS, the Deputy Minister for Social Services said: “The introduction of the real living wage in social care is one of our key priorities and I’m pleased we have been able to do this in our first year of government. I’ve seen first-hand the difference social care workers make to people’s everyday lives and I know just how valued they are.

We want to see more people take up permanent jobs in social care and start a rewarding career. We also hope those who are considering leaving social care, or who have already left, will stay.”

The Welsh Government is also funding a national recruitment campaign and is taking steps to professionalise the sector and improve career progression opportunities.