Progress every day
A former maths teacher from Turkey, Selma was determined to gain further qualifications, skills and experiences, while making a valuable contribution to the British education system. After gaining several ESOL Level 1 qualifications, Selma passed her interview with a local school and was accepted as a volunteer classroom support assistant. Step by step on her journey with the WEA, Selma is moving towards her final goal of re-entering mainstream education.
Who likes feeling stupid?
Everybody needs a Margaret on their Zoom course! As COVID-19 impacted, she immediately recognised fellow students lacked confidence and skills to move from face-to-face to online learning. As a Zoom champion, Margaret’s intervention encouraged many to have a go at free summer classes. WEA online courses threw a lifeline – and Margaret made sure her community grabbed hold.
Reading the signs
Rehana came to this country 25 years ago with no English at all. She couldn't even catch the bus, until learning on class trips. Within a couple of years of joining the WEA, her new-found English secured a job as a cleaner and dinner supervisor. Rehana has travelled alone abroad, something she could never have done before.
Resilient and remarkable women
Christina, Emma, Sarah, Sarah, and Tanja were on their Teaching Assistant Course when lockdown began and learning moved online. While most students paused their study, they stayed with the course and achieved their Level 2 Certificates. It would have been easy for them to walk away, but they supported each other through to the end.
Kenny is a self-proclaimed "gaming geek", with an encyclopaedic knowledge of computer gaming spanning the past 30 years. But, he’s had to develop new digital skills to inspire and engage others online. In the early months of the pandemic, he started a gaming thread on our Facebook page, where the conversation ranged from golden oldies (such as Pong and Space Invaders) to next-gen consoles. Once shy, Kenny now lead rich and enjoyable online conversations. This is a huge step forward.
Chris Paterson has been on an incredible journey to completely transform his life, after discovering a love for learning through his local WEA Job Club in Falkirk.
We’re all adults here
“I left school and home at 16 - pregnant. It was a very isolating point of my life. I wouldn’t have known education was available to me. It was only by chance I met WEA tutor Emma…” - Lisa’s Story
You’re never too old to learn
Margaret: “I couldnae read and I couldnae spell. I thought I was stupid and I was afraid to tell anybody that I couldnae read”...
Take ownership of your life
Graham has had problems with excessive drinking for most of his adult life. He started attending the Reach Out project and taking part in the activities and it’s played a pivotal role in his recovery.
Confidence building through music
“…they are taking the lead and we can just stand back - that’s what it’s all about – increasing independence and confidence for people to just to be themselves”
Sharing skills; improving lives
“It’s not often you get to use the skills you’ve been given at work to help support people outside of work. It’s really satisfying.” - Lloyds volunteers
Making a difference in Rochdale
“My daughter tells everyone ‘my mummy comes to school to learn maths.’ She knows I’m learning something and she realises it’s not just kids that have to learn something - adults do as well”…
A way forward for a lot of people
“I socialise a lot in the WEA. I’ve met different people, different friends. It means a lot to me. It’s improved my confidence…The WEA does work – it’s a way forward for a lot of people here in our community” - Yasmeen’s story
A love story – it’s never too late
“When I was 13 there was a young boy, I liked him and he liked me but he moved away to Glasgow. He wrote me letters but I could never write back…it was only years later that I had the courage to admit I couldnae write back”
Walking back to happiness
After living with mental health issues that left him feeling isolated and depressed for 15 years, David has transformed his life through the Reach Out Project walking group in Aberdeen.
Not your average classroom
“I served just over 2 years in prison. I first got involved with the WEA from our local children’s centre. I was really nervous."
Back in the boxing ring
"I am more involved with the local community with the boxing and my children are really proud of me."
Education for its own sake
“It’s a good space for meeting people with similar interests. All the friends I’ve made here I got to meet through WEA courses…The social aspect is very important at my age.”