B&FC celebrates students winning Lockdown Awards

Published on 26/06/2020 by DTHACK

Blackpool and the Fylde College held a Lockdown Awards ceremony recognising adults' commitment to learning English, maths, ESOL (English as a Second Language) and ICT (information technology).

Blackpool and the Fylde College held a Lockdown Awards ceremony recognising adults' commitment to learning English, maths, ESOL (English as a Second Language) and ICT (information technology).

Students attended the event virtually and were joined by Blackpool's Mayor, Councillor Amy Cross. 

Cllr Cross said: "It is so important that you (the students) have been able to continue with your education virtually, whether it is to get a job or to better yourself.

"Congratulations to all of you and I am honoured to have been able to listen to your stories."

60 people attended the online event, which included tutor-written nominations, short videos from staff and students, and a musical interlude from the North West Ambulance Service choir.

Each nominee will receive an engraved padlock to recognise their achievement.

There were five overall winners, and one learner of the year.

Hayat Abouday won the ESOL Lockdown Award.

Hayat arrived as a refugee from Syria 4 years ago. She had fled the civil war there and arrived in the UK with her husband and children. She manages her studies and home life very well, and has never missed a lesson, as she is determined to improve herself as well contribute to, and be a major part of, her community and the UK. She has embraced integration, and is a fantastic role model for others from her culture, showing how determination and hard work can reap significant rewards within the local community and the UK. 

The winner of the Functional Skills Apprenticeship Lockdown Award was Marie Taylor.

Marie is currently a key worker at Stepping Hill Hospital, Stockport. The job role requires her to ensure the safety of all who attend the hospital as well as putting herself at risk from the virus.

Just before the lock-down Marie and her family had the devastating news that her husband was very ill. She was left with a lot of uncertainty and they were attending a lot of different hospital appointments to find out the extent of the illness and what would happen from there. Despite all of this, Marie has fully engaged with all the work she has been sent in relation to her Functional Skills and was one of the first learners to provide the necessary evidence for predicted grades. Overall she is a very engaged student who always attends sessions with a positive attitude to learning and supports her fellow colleagues whenever she can.

The winner of the Community Lockdown Award was Mandy Egan.

Mandy has been doing really well during lockdown; not only by completing all her work but  also by doing a lot of voluntary work through the Grange, helping people do their shopping, and she has been checking in on some of the other learners on her course who may not have family. When she first came to the course she was really shy and she has massively grown in confidence over the last six months. She has passed Entry 3 and Level 1 in both English and maths.

The winner of the Classroom Lockdown Award was Shelley Browne.

Shelley’s teacher says she is one of nicest young ladies you will ever meet. She was a pleasure to teach at Seasiders and she has fully participated with the weekly online ICT sessions ever since lockdown started. Like many, she was asked to complete two mock ICT exams in the hope that she could gain her ICT Level 1.  She had only completed half of her course before lockdown and with additional online sessions and only the use of a phone to configure word, excel etc. she persevered and has managed to pass. I am absolutely delighted for her, as her continuous hard work and determination has paid off.

The winner of the Employer Facing Lockdown Award was Agnieszka Sysa.

Agnieszka is a full time Luxury Leisure Learner manager, who has been an exemplary student throughout. She has engaged throughout her course and has completed every task she has been set on time. During the sessions, Agneiszka would complete her work as requested and then take a lead role in the group, going around helping other learners, especially the other ESOL learners, with English and maths tasks. By doing this, she actually performed the role of learner support for the group, which was well received not just by her teacher but by the whole group. Her attitude was consistently fantastic and she was a joy to teach. 

The winner of the ACE 19+ Learner of the Year was Balqis Faroukh. 

Balqis faced some extremely difficult issues in her home country of Syria.  She had to curtail her education at the age of 16 and move with her family first to the Lebanon, and then to the UK, to escape the civil war, which caused her huge trauma. Despite this, Balqis  aspires to succeed in this country and is enthusiastic to do well in her studies and find work in the health sector or as a police officer.  Balqis has experienced more than most could imagine; an interrupted education, civil war, loss of family members and her home, and yet she has great enthusiasm to make an impact and make a difference in her new life in the UK, and to look for and grasp all the opportunities she can in order to progress and achieve.  As well as this, she is proud of her culture, and plays a leading part, locally and nationally, in promoting Syrian culture.