30 May 2012>
A special celebration event was held at Llancaiach Fawr recently as part of Caerphilly County Borough Council's Learning Festival held during Adult Learners Week.
The annual event celebrated tutors, learners, community centres and libraries, and was compared by presenter and opera singer Beverly Humphreys.Attendees enjoyed music by teachers from St Martin's School, Blackwood Electronic Keyboard Group from Blackwood Community College, and Beverley Humphreys was accompanied on guitar by Community Leisure Officer, Steve Hawkins to finish the celebrations.
Award Categories included amongst many others, Adult Basic Skills Learner, IT Learner of the Year, Arts and Crafts Tutor of the Year and Informal Learning Group of the year. Here we profile some of the winners of Special Achievement Awards;
Special Achievement Award 2012 Colleen Rogers
Colleen joined an Adult Literacy Group at an Education Centre in Caerphilly in September 2011 as a non-reader. Being a Romany gypsy she missed out on schooling and as a result hadn't learnt to read as a child. Driven by sheer frustration, Colleen found the courage to join the Adult Literacy group and hasn't looked back since.
New to basic skills classes Colleen has conquered all of the initial barriers that often prevent learners attending a class. Since joining the group her confidence has soared. Colleen is now able to deploy strategies that enable her to read simple texts independently and complete details on forms.
Colleen is special because of her sheer determination to learn. She has worked extremely hard and hasn't allowed the barriers of embarrassment to hold her back.
Special Achievement award for Innovate 2012
William Roberts is a dedicated learner on the Innovate project. Through attending the project William has improved his level of basic and social. He has also improved his understanding and awareness of his contribution to his community and this has improved his social responsibility and has now become an active volunteer.
William went to the project as a young person not in Education, Employment or Training. He initially completed a NOCN in ATV safe driving course, this entailed both practical and class-based learning and he achieved 100% attendance. He volunteered on this course to give support to pre 16 young people and families.
William been nominated by the project to be a volunteer as part of the 'Leaves of Hope' convoy team travelling to a Belarus Orphanage, home to 78 three to six year old orphans in July. He will be giving up his time to support these deprived children, and will be working as a team to improve the orphans' environment by painting and decorating and running a play scheme. He will be taking part in fundraising activities to raise the costs for his flights and accommodation.
Through participating in this project this young man's life has changed, he now has a reason to get out of bed in the morning. William now has an ambition to become a bike instructor and a Youth worker.
Special Achievement Awards for New and Expectant Parents 2012 Kersty Fudge and Coral Evans
Kersty and Coral have made considerable personal journeys whilst attending the Young and Expectant Parents Project, project staff feel extremely proud of what girls have achieved and the effort it has required.
Having young babies has not deterred them from continuing with their own education and personal development and as a result, in turn, their children will benefit from the experiences of these motivated and caring mums. Kersty and Coral both deserve recognition.
The skills and attributes Kersty and Coral have gained through attending the Young and Expectant parents Project have enabled them to participate in opportunities, where they can give back the same support they have received. One is participating in the trip to a Belarus Orphanage and the other is embarking on youth work volunteering.
All the winners have worked with determination, overcoming many obstacles to achieve training, qualifications and experience that will improve their lives, their families and their communities, for now and into the future.
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