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Open College Network West Midlands Centres: Lifetime learning for all

Stoke City FC Community Trust

Suzie Flint, Education and Lifelong Learning Project Worker at Stoke City FC Community Trust explains how working in partnership with Open College Network West Midlands enables young people to gain positive learning experiences and prepare them for the world of work.
 
“Open College Network West Midlands have provided fantastic support through the partnership”  
 
Suzie Flint, Stoke City FC Community Trust
 
 
Stoke City FC Community Trust became Open College Network West Midlands Centre Recognised in November 2010.  In 2011 we began offering the Open College Network West Midlands Level 1 Award in STEP-UP to accredit our projects. The qualification was delivered to young people aged 16-18 who were not in education, employment or training. This award equipped young people with application and interview skills, alongside a wide range of transferable skills essential to their success, including teamwork, problem solving and speaking and listening skills. The Community Trust also offered local schools alternative provision, focusing on the development of literacy and numeracy skills, as well as specific projects based on cookery, and health and fitness. The young people gained a positive learning experience, giving them the motivation and self-belief that they could achieve due to the formal accreditation provided.
 
More recently as part of the Ticket2Work project, Stoke City FC Community Trust has introduced the Open College Network West Midlands Level 1 Award in Work Preparation. This qualification facilitates not only employability skills, but has also enabled the accreditation of sector specific skills in retail. Jordan (18 years old), has recently completed Open College Network West Midlands Level 1 Award in Work Preparation qualification and feels that the project has helped him to gain skills for the workplace and now feels more confident going into work. Jordan is being supported to gain work experience where he will also be able to continue to build on his Open College Network West Midlands Level 1 Work Preparation qualification. 
 
 
Stoke City FC Community Trust has been offering young people job seeking and personal development projects since 2006. Through this they have supported over 1000 young people to develop the skills required to prepare them for both work and life and achieve sustained success.  
 
 

Open College Network West Midlands have provided fantastic support throughout the partnership, particularly during the initial stages of setting up the qualification. The qualifications have worked well for the projects offered due to their flexibility, which is essential to the informal learning environment. Also, the wide variety of units available has allowed the development of bespoke programmes tailored to the individual needs of each group.

For further details about Stoke City FC Community Trust visit their website;

http://www.stokecityfc.com/community/index.aspx

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