Hope wins the learndirect Inspiration Award...


15th May, 2014

The Hope Foundation in Middlesbrough is celebrating today after being crowned the winner at a regional ceremony for the learndirect Inspiration Awards.


The Hope Foundation won the centre of the year award in the north region at a ceremony at The Palace Hotel in Manchester yesterday.


The Hope Foundation is a charity which has a mission to bring hope to people with multiple issues and needs through learning and positive achievement. Not only does the centre provide a high quality of learning but it supports vulnerable learners within the community. They offer assistance on filling in forms and a cyber café offering free internet access as well as very low cost meals for financially stretched individuals. Many learners are also given the opportunity to progress into volunteer roles in the centre. They support others not only through qualifications, but also socially. This facilitates settlement into the country and community, raises aspirations, and helps learners move closer to employment. Staff go above and beyond to support their learners and this was recognised during recent Ofsted visits where excellent feedback was given to the staff and the way they communicate with learners.

On receiving the award, Sue Kearney from the Hope Foundation said: “The people and staff are what make the Hope Foundation special. It’s not just about delivering qualifications, it’s about helping people improve their lives as well.”


The learndirect Inspiration Awards celebrate the incredible learners going that extra mile to develop their skills, as well as the businesses and learndirect centres and staff supporting them. The nominees include learners who have overcome personal difficulties to learn and have gone on to find a job or move up in their career, as well as businesses who have thrived as a result of improving the skills and motivation of their workforce through learndirect.

Regional winners will now go forward to a national judging panel, where they will compete with others from across England, Scotland and Wales for a national award. The national winners will be announced at a national ceremony to be held in London on 11 June 2014.


Paul Kilgour, Group Director of Apprenticeships at learndirect hosted the ceremony in Manchester. He said: “The Inspiration Awards are a great opportunity for us to celebrate inspirational local people from all walks of life. The standard of nominations this year has been extremely high, showing the drive and determination of people in the north to improve their skills and make a change to their life. It was a privilege to meet all the finalists and hear the inspirational stories of the winners.”


For more information about the learndirect Inspiration Awards visit www.learndirect.com/awards