Family and Community Learning (FaCL) offers a broad range of learning opportunities intended to encourage adults to: return to learning, further develop skills and qualifications and enhance their lives and to make the most of opportunities. The service, which is a part of the Employment and Skills team, works with a wide range of organisations and local communities and aims to be responsive to the needs of the community.

Amy first attended employability sessions and moved on to study the confidence courses. Despite feeling very nervous she was able to persevere and complete all the learning tasks, she also found she was able to talk about her worries and was able to overcome her hurdle of feeling anxious and lacking in confidence. The courses are a safe space to share worries whilst developing yourself.

Attending the courses has benefited Amy and others socially, both in the group and in other aspects of life; Amy made friends with another parent on the course who has children at the same school, and they talked about how reassuring it is to see a familiar face at the school gate. Through this friend and FaCL, Amy has connected with other learners and met a cousin she didn’t know she had!

During the course of study Amy suffered a family bereavement, but she continued coming to the course sessions even in her grief, as she discussed how she was feeling and used the ideas and techniques on the course to help her to cope. Highlighting how the support of the group can help people to continue even during hard times.

Amy discussed her ambitions for the future, and that while currently a carer for her daughter, she would like to go back to work for her own fulfilment.  Her aspiration is a great example to others, particularly those who may also have similar barriers to getting back into work.  Amy’s next step is to build her confidence with her English skills.  Amy takes responsibility for her work and is willing to ask for help, which is a great example to others in the class. The courses offered by FaCL not only allow individuals to be inspired but to inspire each other.

 Courses are funded by the Education and Skills Funding Agency. Learners must be 19+, have been a resident in the UK/EU for three or more years, have less than five GCSEs grades A – C and/or be a service family and/or in receipt of benefits.

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