Winter 2019

HAFLS Share

WEA 2018 impact report reinforces HAFLS's key messages

The team at HAFLS were encouraged by the WEA's 2018 recently released impact report. It demonstrates that adult learning has an enormous impact on individuals and communities in the UK;

The WEA Launches 2018 Impact Report - Empowering Adults Through Education

A new report from The WEA "Empowering adults through education" – has revealed the transformative effect of adult education to individuals and communities across the country.

The WEA, the UK’s largest voluntary sector provider of adult education teaches around 50,000 students across the UK and they represent some of the hardest to reach in society. The report demonstrates that adult learning has an enormous impact on individuals and communities – transforming outcomes for people in deprived communities; boosting employability, reducing social exclusion and increasing social mobility, enabling them to contribute more and rely less on the health service and government funded financial support.

Over 4,000 students from The WEA were surveyed for the 2017-2018 impact report - which focused on Employability; Health and Wellbeing; Community Engagement and Personal Development.

Key findings from the report include:

Enhancing employability

  • 44% of students who were unemployed and looking for work before the course became employed after
  • 81% of job-seeking students said their courses boosted the skills they would need for work
  • 68% of students in work gained employability benefits as a result of their course
  • 24% of students taking multiple courses reported earning more
  • 13% of students stopped claiming means-tested benefits following a WEA course
  • Improving health and wellbeing
  • 82% of students with mental health issues reported improvements in their condition (68% reduced stress and 65% managed stress better)
  • 72% of WEA students made fewer visits to the GP compared to the national average
  • 64% reported an increase in self-confidence
  • Delivering skills for life
  • 54% enhanced their critical thinking skills
  • 51% boosted their communication skills with 23% improving language and literacy skills
  • 29% improved their problem-solving skills
  • 55% were inspired by their WEA course to continue learning
  • Social cohesion
  • 40% felt a heightened sense of belonging to their community
  • 39% gained a greater understanding of other cultures and 29% felt more respectful to those different to themselves
  • 23% wanted to improve their local area after attending their WEA course

You can download the full report here

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