February is LGBT History Month and the Welsh Ambulance Service has enlisted the help of a talented comic book artist to help in the celebration.
David Llewelyn, founder of Red Dyfi Dragon Comics, has created a series of characters and comic strips which sensitively address issues such as bullying, hate crime and assault on ambulance staff.
Rainbow Shooting Star is one such comic strip which broaches the subject of discrimination against people in the LGBTQ+ community, and will be promoted via the Trust’s LGBT network during February.
Speaking of his voluntary work, David said: “I am very proud to be with the ambulance service.
“I’ve always wanted to help vulnerable adults and children to be safe and to encourage them to believe in themselves.
“Everybody is entitled to live like everybody else.”
David attends Cyfle Newydd Day Centre in Machynlleth and volunteers as a Learning Disability Community Champion for the Trust’s Patient Engagement and Community Involvement Team, whose work involves meeting community groups with protected characteristics and spreading key health and service messages in a way that is engaging and understandable.
David’s comics even won the 2019 Mirror Award (Idea Category), hosted by All Wales People First, a peer-led advocacy service for people with Learning Disabilities.
“I have always wanted to do things with comic book writing,” he said.
“What inspired me to do my comics was that I have a DVD called Charley Says and it has all the old safety adverts from the 60s and the 70s.
“It gave me an idea to use my character the Red Dyfi Dragon to introduce safety messages.”
Through research, the Patient Engagement and Community Involvement Team have also formulated a series of flash cards and a pictoral quiz to help champions spread the ‘Choose Well’ message in healthcare.
Key messages like when to call 999 and when not to, when to use the 111 service and when to visit your GP or pharmacist are covered.
The team are also working with a number of groups to develop training materials to enable staff to respond and engage people better during emergencies.
The team will host an event in Lampeter in June, the first to cater for people with moderate to severe learning disabilities.
For more information on the team’s learning disability engagement work, email PECI.firstname.lastname@example.org
Visit David’s Red Dyfi Dragon Facebook page at https://bit.ly/3bege2l