Award winners

Our award winners highlight the vast array of people who gain so much from learning as adults.

Their stories truly inspire all of us

They help us recognise that learning is transformational, exciting, rewarding and possible at any age, for any reason and can be for all of us.

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2022

Return to Learning Award

Joanne has faced a range of challenges in her life and yet, in some ways, she's very typical of many of the people that come through the doors of adult education providers. After a poor experience of school and grappling with mental health issues, Joanne returned to learning at Hillingdon Adult Community Learning and has seen her confidence and future prospects skyrocket.

Joanne Matthews

Return to Learning Award | Sponsored by City Lit

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Two females sitting at table, one writing & the other looking on

2021

Return to Learning Award

Kirsty experienced personal trauma and turmoil from a young age and had little contact from the outside world. Following many years of trying to turn her life around, Kirsty took a leap of faith back into education at East Riding College and she hasn’t looked back since.

Kirsty Young

Return to Learning Award

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Two females sat at desk with laptop (one with back to camera)

2020

Return to Learning Award

Liz’s experience of education as a child was traumatic, but she took a leap of faith and enrolled on an Introduction to Adult Social Care course with Islington Adult Community Learning.

Liz Collins

Return to Learning Award

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Head shot of male smiling to camera

2019

Return to Learning Award

At school Stuart was told to sit at  the back of the classroom because he couldn’t read or write. Aged 50, he began attending the dyslexia study skills class run by Oldham Lifelong Learning Service. Stuart’s return to learning has opened up new and better job opportunities, and had a profound impact on his life.

Stuart Ferriss

Return to Learning Award

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Male sat at computer desk looking at screen

2018

Return to Learning Award

Washington had hidden the fact that he couldn’t read or write all his life, however with the help of Adult Education Wolverhampton he is now aiming to put that right.

Washington Shearer

Return to Learning Award

Meet the winner