Jessica Watkins

2016 - Regional Winner

Learning for Work Award - Sponsored by NOCN

Jessica was in a negative place before she found refuge at her local children’s centre. She was a newly lone parent with a 3-month-old daughter following the breakdown of her marriage, with no qualifications after leaving school early due to bullying.

However, after getting involved in family learning, she now has an apprenticeship under her belt and a bright future to look forward to.

After completing a puppet making course with her daughter, Jessica progressed on to finish several Adult Education courses, including one around working with children and another around boosting her confidence, where she says she first began to realise her potential.

Following encouragement from staff to volunteer at a nursery, she was offered an apprenticeship. Having completed her NVQ, she sat GCSE English and maths to progress her career further. Now full of confidence, Jessica can financially provide for her daughter while working in a role she loves.

Jessica says learning helped her turn her life around. It helped me realise I could do anything I wanted if I put my mind to it.”

Having a qualification under my belt has allowed me to move on, I am no longer depressed and hold my head up high, allowing me to grow the bond between me and my daughter.”

Jessica is planning a level 3 qualification as the next part of her learning journey.