Adult learners, tutors and education staff came together for a special ‘Celebration of Achievement’ evening at Coleg y Cymoedd’s Ystrad Mynach campus on Tuesday 16th September.
The evening recognised adult learner and tutor achievements in community education throughout the Caerphilly county borough including learners from Coleg y Cymoedd.
Award winners from the college were Basic Skills Learner Michelle-Ann Clothier picking up the Essential Skills for Life Award and Derrick Goodwin, an ICT learner at the Ystrad Mynach campus who achieved the Senior Learner Award.
The Community Group Learning award went to Phillipstown Family Engagement Group who, in partnership with Coleg y Cymoedd, encouraged learners to attain a Key Skill in Improving Own Learning through Mathematics and Essential Skills Level 1 in Numeracy, as well as attending courses in Encaustic Art, Sugar Craft and Christmas Crafts.
Phillipstown Family Engagement Group was also named as Caerphilly Learner of the Year 2014. This small group of parents has undertaken a wealth of training, with the help of Coleg y Cymoedd, and in doing so have forged strong friendships and become an inspiration to other parents.
The award for Tutor of the Year, sponsored by Coleg y Cymoedd, was presented to Sharon Edwards. Sharon, who has been a tutor for the council’s Adult Community Learning team for the past 18 months, said: “Teaching to me is about more than passing on skills and knowledge. It’s about finding a way around the barriers to learning and encouraging people to think about what they can do, what they want to do and how they can achieve it.”
Mayor of Caerphilly county borough, Cllr David Carter, said: “I was delighted to be able to attend this event and help celebrate the achievements of learners, tutors and education staff. Throughout the evening we heard some very inspiring stories from learners who had enrolled in community education in order to reach their goals, and I hope that others will take advantage of the array of learning opportunities available throughout Caerphilly county borough.”
The event was organised by the Caerphilly Learning Festival Planning Group; made up of people from a number of learning organisations, all working to introduce people to learning. In 2014 the group facilitated taster sessions for over 1,200 people in the county borough through Adult Learners’ Week.
Elizabeth Millington, winner of Further & Higher Education Learner, said: “I would encourage anyone who has the opportunity to learn a new subject or get back into education to do so. It’s very easy to think that you are too old or set in your ways to make a change but that change can be very rewarding and a valuable experience. We only get one chance at life and I definitely believe we should make the most of it”.
Other award winners were Beatrice Webb Care Plan Writing Group for the Employee in Learning Award, Kelly-Marie Morris for the Digital Champion Award, Katarina Winston-Jones for the Family Learning Award and Joshua Jehu for Young Adult Learner Award.
Award sponsors included Robert Price Builders’ Merchants, Caerphilly County Borough Council, Niace Cymru, Communities 2.0, Janro, Parent Network, Educ8, Caerphilly’s 50+ Forum and UHOVI. Entertainment during the evening included music from Cefn Hengoed Ladies’ Choir.