Identifying as Welsh: The Importance of the “Friends of Wales”

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Saint David May 25, 2020

Introduction

There are almost 3.2 million people living in Wales today. But what about the Welsh people who are not living in Wales, and how do you define “Welsh”?

What does is it mean to be Welsh?

A project undertaken for the Welsh Assembly in 2018, estimated that there is somewhere between 6 and 16 million Welsh people living outside of Wales.

But being Welsh isn’t just a nationality – it’s an identity.

To be Welsh is to identify with Wales.

We believe that you don’t have to be born Welsh to be Welsh.

The wider, more diverse claim we can make on what it is to be Welsh, the stronger and more prosperous Wales will be.

We’re the small guy, so we need to sing louder and sing together.

Who are the “friends of Wales”?

The “friends of Wales” are everyone in the world who identifies with Wales, including:

1. First Generation Friends – people who were born in Wales but now live permanently or temporarily outside of Wales.

2. Ancestral Friends  – people whose ancestors were either born in Wales or have a connection to Wales, for example, those who are 2nd, 3rd, nth generation Welsh.

3. Neo Friends – the younger generation who identify as Welsh, live outside of Wales and who are key influencers in the age of technological revolution.

4. Returning Friends – people who have lived outside of Wales but who have returned, bringing huge value and first-hand experience of what it is like living as a flag carrier of Wales internationally.

5. Affinity Friends – people who don’t identify as Welsh primarily, but who have an affinity for Wales, because they have either lived, worked or studied in Wales.

6. Consumer Friends – people who are fond consumers of Welsh exports, who may live anywhere in the world.

7. Associate Friends – people who are admirers, fans or supporters of Wales, Welsh people or any aspect of Welsh culture.

Why are the “friends of Wales” are important?

Wales is known for its passion, culture, innovation, creativity, music and sport. It’s also a hugely successful exporter of goods and services, and a world leader in certain areas of technology.

There’s so many great things being done both in Wales and around the world by the friends of Wales, and we want the whole world to know about it.

The International Strategy for Wales, set out in January 2020, aims to raise Wales’ international profile and build on Wales’ international reputation as a hive of creativity and innovation, by engaging with the friends of Wales around the world to leverage their wealth of skills, knowledge and connections.

So we’re setting out to reach 1 million friends of Wales worldwide, to give them a voice to tell their stories and to share those stories with people around the world.

St David’s World is a passion project run by a small team of diverse creatives who are driven by the desire to promote Wales on the international stage, and we know that the best promoters of Wales around the world, are the people.

We’re shining a light on Wales to celebrate our successes. Let’s sing louder and sing together.

Ready to start?

We’re setting out to bring together the friends of Wales worldwide, so that we can build a Welsh presence in every corner of the world and tell the world how great Wales is.

Click on the below link to get started!

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