Solihull College has worked with Briars Barn, a work place for people with learning disabilities, to offer them a qualification in employability skills. Briars Barn is a day service that aims to create work based opportunities through cottage industry values.
Solihull College has been working with staff members at Briars Barn offering Health and Social Care Diplomas since 2008 and they have formed a positive partnership.
Many of the people at Briars Barn were learning about employability skills without gaining a formal qualification, Solihull College offered to work with Briars Barn to give the individuals a chance to get a formal qualification in employability skills. The course aims to develop and enhance skills required for the working environment and improve confidence and communication skills ahead of employment. Modules on the course can include time management, problem solving, computer skills, CV writing and interview skills.
All of those taking part in the course worked extremely hard and passed the course to obtain their formal qualification – NCFE Level 1 in Employability Skills. Carol Baker and Joanne Cowen, both assessors from Solihull College presented the awards to Marcus Bailey, Craig Bray, Ian Wardall and Nicky Lane of Briars Barn. The students were pleased with what they have achieved, Craig commented “I really enjoyed the course and I think it’s a good qualification for when I’m looking for work. I have learnt a lot from doing the course.” Nicky, Marcus and Ian all added that they enjoyed the course and found it interesting. Kim Chance from Briars Barn supported the group throughout the course stated “I am really proud of what they have achieved, they worked hard, concentrated and really wanted to achieve. I’m very happy that Solihull College gave them the opportunity to do the course. I couldn’t be more proud of what they have achieved.”
Briars Barn aims to teach skills that can be transferred into the work place and the partnership with Solihull College has allowed individuals at Briars Barn to gain skills that will benefit them when looking for employment.
Lisa Moore, Service Manager commented “I am so proud of my colleague’s achievements. They had great support from Solihull College. Their successes came down to their attitude, effort and focus – well done.”
This was the first time that Solihull College has partnered with Briars Barn to offer the employability skills course and both hope to continue to work together.