The North

Adult Learners Week 2013 and other activities in North West, North East and Yorkshire and Humberside

AWARD WINNER IN WARRINGTON

Kath Harrison is one of the WLAs at DHL Deutsche Post in Warrington.  She nominated one of her learners (Julie Wright) for the Adult Learners Week Award for Warrington.  Julie beat off the competition and won the award in the Work Skills category.  Kath says “This award recognises her dedication to completing her NVQ in IT in the face of difficult circumstances.”

ALW CERTIFICATE OF ACHIEVEMENT – WLAs @ ALEX SMILES LTD

Becky Smiles is the WLA at Alex Smiles Ltd in Sunderland, a company that provides waste collection, reclamation and disposal services.  Becky has been successfully promoting a range of formal and informal learning opportunities to colleagues and was presented recently with an Adult Learners’ Week Certificate of Achievement in recognition of commitment to learning.

NORTH WEST

CUMBRIA – BRINGING THE LIBRARY TO WORKPLACES

3 WLA employers in West Cumbria celebrated Adult Learners Week 2013 by welcoming Cumbria Libraries into their workplaces.  The Rum Story, COSC (Copeland Occupational & Social Centre) and The Haig Mining Museum were visited by Cumbria Library Service.  The purpose of the visits was to showcase the range of Learning books/DVDs/CDs that are available in local libraries.    Resources covering How to be a better manager, How to improve Maths & English Skills, How to speak a language, Feel more confident, Get involved with DIY/Crafts/Cooking/Dancing and many more were put on display in the workplaces.

USING APPRENTICESHIPS TO DEVELOP SKILLS AT KELLAN GROUP

Amanda Hesketh is a WLA based at the North West office of Kellan Group Plc in Warrington, a recruitment business operating across a wide range of industry sectors. Amanda decided that it would be beneficial for the company to take advantage of free training provided by apprenticeships. She encouraged 11 members of staff to sign up for training in Business Administration, Leadership & Management and Recruitment Skills.

 

Amanda says "There have been lots of benefits to the company by getting staff involved in apprenticeships especially as it has helped to develop confidence, skills and expertise in the particular job title. Staff have developed skills in dealing with staff, managing time and ensuring the customer service is excellent every time and the flexible assessment carried out in the workplace has meant that staff can gain a qualification alongside their normal job."

 

 

DEVELOPING LEADERSHIP SKILLS IN THE NORTH WEST

Julie Steele is a WLA who runs In-Corpor8 Industries Ltd, an office, commercial and corporate cleaning company based in Warrington.  Julie read in a WLA E-Shot that Kendal College were offering a free EDI Level 2 Certificate in Team Leading Principles for companies across the northern regions and decided to promote this course to her staff and to staff from 3 other WLA companies nearby.   To date Julie has organised 2 courses and plans a third in July.  Julie says “People who attended the course have gained a wide range of skills including building the confidence to deal with people and interact effectively with their teams.”   This is a great example of WLA companies working together to take advantage of free skills training opportunities.

DHL – LEARNING AT WORK DAY 2013

This year the WLAs at DHL Deutsche Post in Warrington organised a wide range of activities for colleagues.  A lot of these activities were made possible by free contributions from external providers and by the WLAs utilising in-house skills to make things happen.  External training providers ran sessions in Communications Skills, Finding balance in your life and Identifying your learning styles.  WLAs and the company Maths Champion offered sessions giving people a chance to find out more about learning opportunities.  In addition, this year the theme at DHL was “Learning about ourselves and each other” and Role-R-Coasting sessions were set up – Staff talking about and demonstrating their job role to others.  A great chance for staff to share skills and knowledge.

 

USING AN IDEA OF THE MONTH FOR LEARNING

Stephanie France is one of 2 WLAs based at the Newton le Willows office of Speedy Hire Direct, a company that provides equipment and support to a range of industry sectors.   Stephanie has been using a noticeboard and emails to promote learning and has also come up with a novel way of keeping colleagues interested, a ‘Learning idea of the month’.  Using this idea she can flag up learning themes and a recent theme was 'Learning a Language' which enabled her to promote the free BBC Language courses in time for summer holidays.  Stephanie also started a book swap in Adult Learner Week and plans to further develop this to include more non-fiction books with a learning emphasis.

 

MANCHESTER CAB PROMOTING MOOCs

Anne-Marie Harris is a newly trained WLA from Manchester Citizens Advice Bureau and she has already been busy getting learning on the agenda.  She has displayed and emailed a selection of learning information to staff during the recent Adult Learning Week and included information about the Edinburgh University MOOC (Massive Open On-Line Course) which has got staff talking about topics as diverse as extra terrestrial life and equine nutrition!  More information about the Edinburgh MOOC can be found on the March 2013 E-Shot on the WLA website.  Anne Marie is also encouraging colleagues to consider refreshing Maths skills and to discover their learning styles.  A great start to her role as a WLA.

 

NORTH EAST

ALEX SMILES LTD - FOCUSING ON SKILLS, HEALTH & FUN

Alex Smiles Ltd took a very eclectic approach to Adult Learners Week this year with a Drop-In session focusing on functional skills and NVQs, a Healthy Habits, Healthy Minds Talk, a visit from the Health Bus and a Boot Camp including Tyre Flipping.

CUSTOMS HOUSE – MIXING FUN & SKILLS

Garry Besford is a newly trained WLA from Customs House, an arts centre in South Shields.  He decided to offer 2 different learning opportunities in Adult Learners Week.  Staff got the opportunity to try out Nail Art and also an Introduction to Writing Minutes.   It is great to see WLAs mixing fun and vocational skills training to encourage people to take the first steps into learning.  Garry is also pleased to report the achievement of Investors in People accreditation recently and says “Our learning and development activities have really helped with the whole process.”

 

RAYTEC CCTV – NEW WLAs OFFERING RANGE OF TRAINING

Elaine Nordstrom and Carol Pattison are new WLAs at Raytec CCTV, an LED light manufacturing company based in Northumberland.  They have offered a range of training opportunities to staff in the last few months.  They have made use of the Maths4Us for WLAs section of the website and given staff the chance to use an office computer to improve their maths skills.  They have also embraced Adult Learners Week and offered sessions including How to use your I-Phone to download Apps, Manicure & Pedicure and Cup Cake Decorating.  They are currently working with a local training provider to identify NVQs for staff which will include Maths and English assessments to help staff to improve these core skills.

 

YORKSHIRE WLAS ARE GETTING LEARNING HAPPENING

WLAs in Yorkshire only started fairly recently but already learning activity in underway.  Newly trained WLAs are involved in a range of learning activities.  Anne-Marie Ledson, WLA at Advonet in Leeds organised a ‘Language Exchange’ session for Adult Learners Week where staff taught each other some basics in different languages.  Mags Ashman, WLA at Revive Leeds has been supporting people to take part in free distance learning courses and Tina Ashby from Voluntary Action Leeds is involved in a new project called Mid-Life Career Review which plans to support staff and volunteers to make effective decisions about a range of issues in mid-life.