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Raising Aspirations - Adults (CVP)
Aspirations RaisedThe majority of targets have either been met or exceeded on this project with 180 people engaged in informal learning and almost 160 undertaking an OCN accredited course.On 15 March 2012, a celebration event was held at Doe Lea Resource Centre to celebrate the success of the WNF funded projects and to recognise the achievements of the learners, the volunteers and the volunteer involving organisations.

Raising Aspirations (CVP) Main

Raising Aspirations (Adults - CVP)


About the project...

This project aimed to help create socially and economically thriving communities through raising aspirations and building the capacity of local people. It provideed a range of entry points into learning and skills development which recognised existing skills and confidence levels as well as the particular requirements and constraints facing excluded individuals. It offered a flexible approach to learning and skills development which was locally delivered, community based, and individually tailored for unemployed and economically inactive adults throughout the district.

The project objectives were to:

  • Undertake community engagement activities to identify learning needs, interests and obstacles
  • Build a database of training/learning provision and community based facilities
  • Deliver informal learning opportunities designed to engage new learners, build confidence, self-esteem and the capacity to engage in further programmes of learning
  • Deliver National Open College Network (OCN) accredited learning packages
  • Recruit and support Community Learning Champions

Underpinning this delivery was the ‘community development approach’ to community based learning. Central to all of the training/learning delivery was a sense of personal growth and transformation where people are encouraged and empowered to take greater control of their lives, make decisions about their future and actively participate in changing their personal circumstances and improving their communities.

Key aspects of this project included supporting the creation and delivery of informal and OCN accredited learning by local people and community groups themselves. Training support and development opportunities were provided to local people to become community based Learning Champions. The role of Learning Champions was to deliver local training, signpost local people to training/learning opportunities, advocate on behalf of local people and provide mentoring support to learners.

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Raising Aspirations (Adults - CVP) - Contacts


Project Manager

Training and Capacity Building Officer

Lorna Wallace
Chief Executive Officer
Kitchen Croft
Oxcroft Lane
S44 6NF
Tel: 01246 823852
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Deborah Morton
Training and Capacity Building Officer
Kitchen Croft
Oxcroft Lane
S44 6NF
01246 823852




 Open pdf documentFinal Evaluation Report
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Raising Aspirations (Adults - CVP) - Case Studies

Some names have been changed to protect identities.



G had been receiving support from two of the FIS champions for a number of months and had been ‘budget buddied’ by them. G came along to one of our promotion days to make the tea and coffee as the FIS Champions had thought this would help G get out of the house more and meet new people, in a supportive environment.

As G became more familiar with the surroundings they came along to Pear Tree house with the FIS Champions to make tea for everyone on occasions. During December we held a short taster course which G came along to and quite enjoyed. In January, on one of G’s visits, they met up with Lisa from FEI who then made a formal appointment so that G could get some support in terms of getting more ready for work.

When G had finished the FEI appointment they seemed extremely happy and, in their own terms, ‘buzzing’ about the future, so I encouraged G to sign up for some further training with us, which they consequently did. G was a bit nervous about coming to the training on their own but one of the FIS Champions offered to be an escort and I told G that I would be there on the first day of the course and I would look out for them. As it happened the course ended up being delivered within walking distance of G’s house, so that caused less stress and G also encouraged a friend along to the course which would also provide a bit more moral support.

G was a bit nervous on the first day but the tutor put everyone at ease, as usual, and G took a very active part in the course; contributing to discussions and enjoying the practical aspects. Through discussions in these sessions we talked about further experience and G expressed an interest in doing some volunteering, which I quickly passed on to the Volunteering project. Within two weeks G had met with Geoff and had secured a place at a local resource centre, supporting the care of the elderly patients.

G was very keen to update me on this at the next session and the following week couldn’t wait to tell me about their first ‘real’ day volunteering as an escort on the bus and how much they had enjoyed interacting with the patients.

Throughout this period G has changed considerably; during the time I have known G they have changed from someone who was struggling to look you in the eye and who didn’t have much going on in their life apart from their dog, to someone who is confident, outgoing, up for a challenge and is ready to face the future with a much more positive outlook.



L was volunteering and was referred onto the Introduction to Health and Social Care course, as it complimented their volunteering role. The person that referred L said that L was extremely nervous and lacking in confidence and that this needed to be taken into consideration.  It was also highlighted that L had previous issues with leaving the house and interacting with others.

When I went to observe the course on the second session I couldn’t identify anyone who may fit this description (not having met L in person before) and was surprised when I found out who L was. There was no trace of nervousness and L was contributing to the session and asking questions.  It was obvious that the tutor had built up a good relationship with L and all the other participants and was providing a very positive and supportive learning environment. During the remaining sessions L continued to be a very active member of the group, contributing ideas, asking questions and interacting with the others.

I had a brief discussion with the person who referred L in after the course; this person was pleased to hear my thoughts about how L had taken such an active part in the course and had not seemed nervous at all. I was equally pleased to hear that following on from the course L had continued to progress with this confident behaviour whilst volunteering. L completed the course, attended every session and gained qualifications in Health and Safety, Food Safety and First Aid, along with a certificate of course completion.


Learner S

Learner S was referred to CVP by the Family Employment Initiative and attended a Spreadsheet course. He was a ‘mature’ learner and quite shy, saying that he felt guilty at needing to take up the tutors time, when there were so many younger learners who seemed to know what they were doing and who he thought needed the tutor far more than he did because they were more likely to get a job. With this in mind he rushed through some of the work trying to keep up with the others and made mistakes.

The Training Officer went in to provide support on the course and spent some time one-to-one with S, guiding him through and encouraging him to ask every time he needed help. He was able to rectify the mistakes he made in the beginning, completed the course and is on target for a Level 1 qualification. He is now putting his new skills to use and has made his own spreadsheet, tracking the jobs he has applied for and the results from the applications. He is also keen to learn more.

He has gained confidence from the course through using the skills he developed for himself, but also through accepting that he was as ‘valuable’ as the other learners and realising that he could have the support necessary for him to complete the course at his own pace.


Case Study

One of the people who came to the Volunteers Week launch signed up with the Volunteering Project. He was signposted to Willow Tree Farm and Rhubarb Farm Challenges, which he attended. At the Rhubarb Farm challenge he spoke to Jason who encouraged him to get more involved. At the end of the day they had arranged for him to go back the following Wednesday to do more volunteering with a view to him becoming a regular volunteer.

One of the people who came along to do the Introduction to Volunteering OCN as a Children’s Centre volunteer has now decided to take on a small part of the Community Champion role within her existing volunteer role at the Children’s Centre. This was one of the main reasons for putting the two courses together and it has worked this time.

Confidence Building session 8th April: I went to observe the whole session. One person (C) was so nervous about talking in public she started to shake and break out in a rash at the mere mention of doing a presentation at the end of the session. Another person (A) stated point blank that she would not do one but, at the same time, she understood that if she wanted to run her own business, she would need to. The tutor accepted their views and carried on through the session. At the end of the session (C) stood with four other people and presented a story, and (A) did a five minute talk on the town of Bolsover all by herself. Both of them were quite amazed at what they had managed to achieve with the support of the tutor and the other students.

On the last Food Safety course at Willow Tree Farm, one of the learners had been referred by the FEI. She came in feeling very nervous and under pressure to get back to work, although she hadn’t had a job for around 20 years. She had always been a stay at home wife as her husband had a good job, but had recently been made redundant.  They were both at their wits end. I calmed her down and encouraged her to do the Food Safety and talked to her about the support available through our one stop shops. To be honest I didn’t think she would stay, even though I did highlight the issue quietly with the tutor, and certainly didn’t think she would follow up on the one stop shop idea. However, a few weeks later she came into Kitchencroft with her husband to see Jon about benefits and money advice and she told me she had completed the Food Safety day and was looking forward to finding out if she had passed or not.



'Beth's' mum attended a Making Sense campaign and made enquiries about her daughter attending a confidence building session, or a Food Hygiene Course. 'Beth' had some problems and needed a bit of a boost and some encouragement to come out of the house, so it was agreed that a confidence building session would be a good starting point. Her mum signed her up to the course at Tibshelf and came along with her for support.

Feedback from the tutor showed that after a slow start and some emotional reactions to some of the stories that were told, 'Beth' became engaged in the session and participated fully in the final activities. Both 'Beth' and her mum have expressed an interest in joining the next Chesterfield College Raising Aspirations course.


Iain took part in the Community Champion pilot training course as part of his involvement with the Financial Inclusion Project which he had been referred to by the Bolsover Volunteering Project. He was unemployed, but had a significant amount of experience working in the financial services industry.

He completed the Community Champion course and through this saw that this role as a Financial Inclusion Champion was closely linked with that of the Learning Champion and the Health Champion.

He has progressed on to secure himself a volunteering role within his own community in the south of the district and is including within this role the element of Learning Champion. He has attended and very nearly completed a Level 1 OCN Peer Mentoring Course, and is currently putting these new skills to use within his own area.

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Raising Aspirations (Adults - CVP) - Outputs


Outputs 08/09
Unemployed people gaining employment       8 8

Unemployed adults in informal learning

    59 121 180

Unemployed adults in OCN accredited learning

    28 130 158

Unemployed adults achieving OCN level 2

    17 47 64

Unemployed adults progressing into further learning or volunteering

      30 30
Community Learning Champions recruited     4 14 18
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Raising Aspirations (Adults - CVP) - Archives


2011/12 Year End

Excellent progress has been made by the project during Quarter 4, with the majority of targets either being met or exceeded. CVP has worked extremely hard over the last six months or so to get these targets back on track from a fairly slow start at the beginning of the project.

On 15 March, a celebration event was held at Doe Lea Resource Centre to celebrate the success of the WNF funded projects and to recognise the achievements of the learners, the volunteers and the volunteer involving organisations.

There has also been the addition of another City and Guilds 7300 Introduction to Trainer Skills, which has equipped a further four economically inactive residents of Bolsover to gain a level 3 qualification.

2011/12 Quarter 3

Good progress has been made this quarter against targets, with good outcomes for people entering employment. Courses that were delivered in Q3 include:

  • 2 x Introduction to Health and Social Care – level 2
  • Wood Working (Limestone Journeys) – informal
  • Introduction to Trainer skills, City and Guilds 7300 – Level 3
  • Wood Carving (Limestone Journeys) – informal
  • Make your own Christmas  - informal
  • 4 x Introduction to Financial Capability

A ‘bit of a do’ event was held in December to celebrate the success of learners, to present certificates and to recruit for further courses and volunteering opportunities. 35 people attended all who had been involved with CVP as a learner, a volunteer or a volunteering organisation.   

2011/12 Quarter 2
 A number of activities took place this quarter including:
  • Health and safety in the workplace - level 2
  • Get Digging
  • Food Hygiene - level 2
  • IT basics
  • Using computers for work
  • OCN level 1 Spreadsheets
  • Emergency First Aid - level 1
  • The Success Factor
  • Conflict Management
  • Ice Age Camp
  • Bushcraft
  • Introduction to Hedge Laying/Tree Planting
  • Introduction to Customer Service
2011/12 Quarter 1

A number of activities took place this quarter including:

  • Confidence Building
  • Emergency First Aid at Work
  • Food Safety in Catering
  • Community Champions Course (five on track to complete)
  • Limestone Journeys Launch
  • Volunteers Week Sessions
  • The Big Celebration (joint event across all Raising Aspirations projects)
  • Working with Family Employment Initiative and Jobcentre Plus deliver a Work Club in Shirebrook

2010/11 Year End

The project has been busy delivering a number of events and training programmes over the last quarter including First Aid and Food Safety courses as well as sessions in Confidence Building, Budgeting, Emailing, Healthy Eating, Fitness, and Craft/Painting.

A Share-Celebrate-Learn event at Doe Lea took place in March 2011 in conjunction with Read On Write Away and some of the Children’s Centre’s and focused on promoting and taking part in learning as well as the recruitment and promotion of community champions and the presentation of volunteering awards.  At this event:

  • 32 people attended
  • 12 were interested in becoming a Community Champion
  • 12 were interested in further training opportunities

Outputs achieved by the project remain below target across the board.  Discussions with the project manager are needed therefore to assess whether outputs not achieved in 2010/11 can be achieved in future years.

2010/11 Quarter 3

Although some outputs are down against target in Quarter 3, plans to catch up by the end of 2010/11 are in place (with the exception of OCN3 and NVQ2, which will be added to next year’s targets).

The Working Neighbourhoods Fund Technical Group has approved a carry forward of £15,000 from this financial year into 2011/12, part of which will be used to fund a state of the art training facility within CVP’s new premises in the centre of Bolsover.

2010/11 Quarter 2

Activities that have been taking place during Quarter2:

  • The Capacity Building and Development Officer commenced in post on 19 July 2010
  • A training plan has been developed and includes OCN accredited and informal courses
  • The first ‘Community Champions’ course has been developed and is aimed at developing essential knowledge/skills
  • Requests for training are being received and two First Aid courses are scheduled in, one for a walking group and the other for a mum’s group, some of whom are potential Learning Champions.
  • A database of training venues and providers is being developed
  • Community engagement activities are in the planning stage

The full activities programme will commence in October 2010, with community engagement events planned monthly during Quarter 3.

2010/11 Quarter 1

The most significant outcome in Quarter 1 was the successful recruitment of the Training and Capacity Building Officer – Deborah Morton – who will be responsible for delivering the project.  Deborah will take up the post on 19 July 2010.

Plans for Quarter 2 include:

  • Training network meetings
  • Mapping and initial fun taster events
  • Promotional material disseminated
  • Detailed informal learning plan developed
  • OCN training programme drafted and accreditation secured for courses commencing October
  • First Community Learning Champions identified and recruited.
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Meetings and Events

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