Connecting, socializing and upskilling
Community Education – Is one of the benefits of ‘community education classes’ helping overcome loneliness and isolation?
One of the discussion points Let’s Learn’s Committee members had with MP Jan Tinetti recently, dwelt on the undervalued benefit of night classes and day courses in helping people meet others in their community, and overcoming loneliness and isolation. The courses aren’t just for you to learn a skill or hobby, but they meet a deep and meaningful need for social interaction and connection.
Loneliness appears to be a hot topic – and people getting involved in some form of Community Education could be one solution. While social media works for some, there are others who need real contact, verbal communication and interaction and to feel part of a group. Courses and classes give people the opportunity to gather with a common focus, and while undertaking that journey, they get their social needs met too.
While some people dismiss the idea and value of such courses, they are unknowingly disregarding the powerful side effects that social interaction in a safe and nurturing place can offer.
So next time you hear someone say they are lonely, or feel isolated, maybe you could suggest a local community education course, club or hobby group.. and emphasise the social interaction and contribution they could enjoy by attending.
Looking for something to be a part of? go to www.letslearn.co.nz
Congratulations to all those who were nominated for the 2017 Adult Education Awards. The calibre of the more than 40 nominees and their stories of fantastic effort and excellence achieved was an honour to them but did provide the judges with an extremely difficult task.
The following awards were presented:
Innovative Providers –People or entities providing creative adult education in the Bay
Winner: Let’s Learn – Community Education Bay of Plenty.
Commendation : Gernius.
Exceptional Adult Educator -(Provider Category)
Supreme Winner: Dan Taylor of Toi-Ohomai
Commendation: Jo Kemp of Toi-Ohomai,
Commendation: Leitta Erni of Gernius.
Exceptional Adult Educator (Community Category) :
Winner: French Cooking Tutor Stephen Wilson.
Outstanding Adult Learner Award honours the student who has grown through adversity to excel in their area of study.
Supreme Winner: Isaac Crowe of Toi-Ohomai Institute of Technology
Commendation: Candice Tangney, a Student of Toi- Ohomai
Commendation: Rachel Morrison of Toi- Ohomai, Institute of Technology.
Life Long Learner Award –
Winner: Lesley Monteiro
Learn how to be a customer service superstar !
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The Incubator is a Winner !
Article by Annemarie Quill, Bay of Plenty Times
A Budget Services Success Story !
The first batch of graduates from Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology’s Bachelor of Creative Industries walked across the stage this week at Holy Trinity Church.
The three-year degree offers majors in Visual Art, Graphic Design, and Fashion Design. And 65-year-old Norah Maclachlan (pictured) is among them, and credits the staff at the institute for helping her achieve her goal.
“Being an older student, I have a problem understanding written word, which was a challenge in itself. But I had a very understanding tutor, who pushed me when I thought I couldn’t do it.”
She’s always sewn and enjoyed craftwork, and after her job was disestablished, she decided to try something new.
“Being an older person made it quite hard to get another job,” says Norah.
“My son was already studying to be a fashion designer, and he suggested I start doing the certificate in fashion at the institute.
“I already knew how to sew, so the biggest challenge was making my own patterns. But that whetted my appetite, and encouraged me to carry on to the bachelor degree.”
Norah says the degree was a bit of a learning curve, but it also allowed her to pick up more skills.
“We did more than just fashion. We worked on the business side, and learned about graphic design and visual arts as well.”
And her ambition now?
“I’m a bigger woman, and short, so what I want to do is create stylish patterns for women with that shape. I’ve tried looking for clothes myself, and they often look like sacks,” laughs Norah.
“What I’m exploring at the moment is my craftwork, so I’m working on showcasing that for a start.”
With a degree under her belt, she no doubt has many more options now. Her advice to people thinking about studying is to have a go, no matter what prior experience you have.
“If you have a passion for art, or a passion for fashion, go for it. It doesn’t matter what age you are, or the challenges you face. It’s worth it in the end.”
Article by Ryan Wood published in the Weekend Sun 16th December 2016
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