Community Learning is a vital initiative under the umbrella of the Bristol City Council’s Employment, Skills, and Learning team. This initiative is dedicated to providing free community learning courses for residents of Bristol and North Somerset, targeting individuals with few or no qualifications, as well as adults who are unemployed and facing multiple barriers to learning and work.
Xelium was involved in the procurement and deployment of specialist IT equipments for education and training as well as personal devices for learners. We also work in partnership with Community Learning in an advisory capacity.
What Community Learning Offers
The array of courses offered by Community Learning is extensive and designed to cater to a variety of needs and interests. These include functional skills like English, Maths, and ICT, courses aimed at improving employability such as First Aid, Food Hygiene, and Customer Service, as well as English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL), and courses focused on family learning and parenting. These courses are structured to assist adults in gaining skills and building confidence, thereby opening up further learning opportunities or pathways into employment.
A notable aspect of Community Learning is its accessibility and affordability. ESOL courses and accredited employability courses are free for individuals over 19 years old and on means-tested benefits, while a nominal fee is applied to those not on benefits. Other courses, including English and Maths, are free for adults over 19 years old who have lived in the European Economic Area for three years or more, with different rates applied to younger learners or those who haven’t met the residency requirement.
Serving the Communities in Bristol
Community Learning operates across various locations within Bristol, including North, South, East, and Central regions, offering over 400 courses in 150 different venues to around 2,000 residents. The initiative boasts a good Ofsted rating and reports that over 60% of its learners progress to further learning, volunteering, or employment. This success is attributed to collaborations with children’s centers, schools, and numerous community and voluntary organisations, alongside statutory providers, ensuring a quality learning experience for all participants.
For those interested in exploring the courses or needing further information, Community Learning encourages direct contact through the Community Learning website, where potential learners can find details on available courses, how to enroll, and ways to contact the organisation for more guidance.