New colleague Jemma – guest post

Today I have a guest post from a new colleague who will tell you about herself and the work she’ll be doing at CyMAL. Read on for a cake reference too. Over to Jemma:


Portrait photo of Jemma

Jemma Francis

Hi all! Alyson invited me to write a guest blog post to tell you a bit more about myself and my work as the new Libraries Development Adviser for CyMAL.

I started in the post of Libraries Development Adviser just over 7 weeks ago, and I feel more settled in now. It’s been great to meet so many people over the past 7 weeks at various meetings and events; some familiar faces and lots of new ones. Thanks to everyone for being so welcoming! I look forward to meeting more people as time goes on.

I see my main role as Libraries Development Adviser as being a source of support and advice to libraries and library staff throughout Wales. My main areas of work will be:

  • health and wellbeing
  • digital inclusion
  • literacy and information literacy
  • the procurement of a library management system for public libraries in Wales.

I’ll also be supporting the work of the SEWP and SWAMP regional partnerships. Alongside this, I will be doing everyday tasks such as assisting with the Ministerial work (correspondence, briefings, diary cases for example) and assisting with the CyMAL grant programme.

Table with Halloween themed cakes

I make cakes in my spare time.

It may be useful to tell you a bit about my background before working for CyMAL. I have plenty of first hand experience of what it is like to work in libraries in Wales across the different sectors.  After graduating in 2001, I started work for Caerphilly public library service, moving on from there to work in Cardiff University Special Collections and Archives Department and the Arts and Social Studies Library. In 2006 I started working for the Welsh Government, where I have worked in various roles, including social research, international relations, and most recently as a Systems Librarian and Legal Librarian in the Welsh Government library service.

I am also enthusiastic about working with young people, and was a youth worker for 10 years with the Caerphilly County Borough Youth Service, and I also volunteered as a Development Coach with the Prince’s Trust.  I’ve done many things in all of these roles, from dressing up as an astronaut, teaching young people to salsa dance, to dealing with legal information enquiries from Welsh Government lawyers – so hopefully my varied experience will stand me in good stead for my current role!

Although CyMAL are based in Aberystwyth office, I am based in the Welsh Government office in Cathays, Cardiff.  I’ve had some really positive feedback about the fact there is a CyMAL representative in south Wales. If you want to get in touch about anything I’ve talked about, please don’t hesitate!  My contact details are below.

Thanks and bye for now!

Jemma (email or tel 029 2082 3159)

About alysontyler

Civil servant, yoga teacher and former librarian.
This entry was posted in CyMAL, Libraries and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to New colleague Jemma – guest post

  1. Wow, that cake is fancy. The polar opposite of the collapsing chocolate horror this particular librarian made recently.

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