Bedford Borough CouncilEconomic Participation Bedford  ‘Learning Communities’ 2010-11


The Learning Communities Project was an initiative supported and made possible by the East of England Development Agency (EEDA) and Bedford Borough Council.

The project aimed to establish a learning community across Bedford Borough by engaging with and motivating local people to improve their employability, increase their overall skill levels and improve their opportunities to participate fully in the economy.

logo-eedaLocal learning providers worked together to set up a network of Community ‘Learning Champions’ who are based in each of the 6 most deprived wards of the Borough.  The Champions, supported by these local providers, used the wards as a base to promote learning and offer information and advice to local people.

The Learning Champions worked closely with the 3rd sector and organised a range of initiatives and events within their wards to act as a voice and forum for learning for local people.

The project engaged with over 200 workless adults and young people in Bedford, offering and supporting them through a range of tailored initiatives to guide them back into work and/or learning.

logo-esf fundedThis included:

  • First steps style learning sessions in a variety fo subjects
  • Skills development
  • Assistance in getting back to work
  • Information, advice and guidance and next step support
  • Signposting/referral to further ‘into’ employment support
  • Signposting/referral to further learning opportunities

Coordinator & Contact

Caroline Wilkins
T:  01234 840758

Partners on this Project

  • Access Europe
  • Bedfordshire Adult & Community Learning
  • Community Learn Direct
  • Family Groups
  • Home Start Bedford Borough
  • Polish British Integration Centre