A message from our supporter, Department for Education

The Department for Education is proud to be a longstanding supporter of the Festival of Learning.

For more than a quarter of a century, Festival of Learning, and its predecessor Adult Learners' Week, has highlighted the transformational power that learning can have on people’s lives.

We know that developing new or existing skills leads to improved life chances, which benefits individuals, their families, the communities they live in and the economy of the country.

I am pleased that we can join with you to mark and celebrate the achievements of individuals, learning providers, tutors and employers. These are the shining examples of the pivotal role that learning can play in people’s lives.

The Festival of Learning award winners show us that it is never too late to learn something new or develop our skills. The winners show us that even though taking that leap into the unknown can be daunting, and require the perseverance and dedication to overcome lots of barriers, the rewards can be invaluable.

Education does not stop after full-time education.  Employers also contribute to lifelong learning through supporting staff development, making sure their workforce has up to date skills, and providing opportunities for upskilling and workplace progression.  This is an opportunity to celebrate their contributions to learning as well.

We want to encourage more people to learn throughout their lives. We want to remind everyone that whoever you are, whatever your age and wherever you live, learning can change your life. It can give you confidence, build your self-esteem, and give you the chance to do things you never dreamt were possible.Each year, Festival of Learning demonstrates that education can change lives – a cause which I am delighted to get behind and support.

The Rt Hon Anne Milton MP, Minister of State for Apprenticeships and Skills