learndirect, the UK’s largest provider of free advice and information about learning, has launched a new phase of its campaign to encourage and increase learning amongst the south Asian community.
learndirect first launched its bilingual advice lines in 2004, with a focus on improving English language skills within the community. Having received more than 50,000 calls since its launch, learndirect is now taking the next step in encouraging members of the South Asian community to build on their language skills and try their hand at new courses that could open up a world of new experiences and opportunities for them.
Gareth Dent, Operations Director for learndirect Advice says of the campaign and the drive to offer greater learning services: “To have received over 50,000 calls is really encouraging and we really want people to understand that learning, or simply improving their English is just the first step in what could be a very exciting world of opportunities. The new campaign shows how, by learning English, people have gone on to fulfil their dreams and tap into other skills that they have.”
learndirect has access to information on nearly a million courses in just about every subject, from nursing and childcare to plumbing and engineering. learndirect advisors can help find the right course to help people take the next step, at a local college or even a centre within the community.
Dent continues: “We’ve seen some really interesting trends from the calls we’ve received. Over the past six months we’ve seen that more than 60% of the calls from the Gujarati, Punjabi and Pakistani communities, are from women, whereas in the Sylheti community, men and women are fairly even in their interest levels. This is probably an indication that men are already confident and comfortable with their English, and so the new phase of the campaign will encourage them to take a different course – whether it be training to be a mechanic, a plumber or focusing on improving their IT and computer literacy skills.”
The learndirect Advice Line also provides information on more than 7,000 English language courses for people whose first language is not English, information relating to day or evening classes, women only or men only courses, as well as providing information about help with childcare and funding.
So, whether you want to improve your English or feel that you want to take the next step and try your hand at a course in beauty therapy, car maintenance or catering, call the learndirect Advice Line and speak to an advisor in Gujarati Punjabi, Urdu, Sylheti or English.
The learndirect Advice Lines are open from Monday to Friday:
Gujarati: 0800 093 1119 between 9am and 5pm
Punjabi: 0800 093 1333 between 9am and 8pm
Sylheti: 0800 093 1444 between 9am and 5pm
Urdu: 0800 093 1118 between 9am and 8pm