22 April 2022

Wes Streeting MP visiting Redbridge Institute

We were delighted to welcome Wes Streeting, MP to Redbridge Institute on Friday 22nd April. Wes had the opportunity to meet with some of our learners and discuss their learning journey and achievements at the Institute as well as finding out how studying at the Institute has helped them in the career progression. Wes said that his visit at the Institute was inspirational and after speaking to the learners it was clear why the Institute is one of the only two outstanding local authority adult education providers in England. He added that “Lifelong learning is transformational”.





















You can read our learners’ stories below.

Meesha Bapodra - Bookkeeping & Sage Level 1

Meesha worked for Sainsbury as a trainer for 10 years before being made redundant.  She then went on to work at a school doing admin work, again being made redundant, this then resulted in her being unemployed for 18 months.  During this time Meesha attended various Family learning courses with her child and it was at one of the library sessions that she saw a flyer advertising courses at Redbridge Institute.   

Meesha attended the Employability Hub at Gearies as she wanted to join some classes to increase her skills set, but she couldn’t afford to pay for them, and also to get advice on what would be the best jobs to apply for.  Meesha said she got some excellent advice from Angela Vangelder with Angela advising her to use her skills in Customer Service to look for roles away from retail as the job she had previously done was not widely available any more.  She also advised her to go to the Job Centre for advice on how to get funding for the courses she wanted to do – Bookkeeping and Sage – and as a result of visiting the Job Centre she was able to use her NI credits to allow her to get free courses.  This resulted in Meesha enrolling onto Bookkeeping and Sage Level 1 with Pratibha and engaging with Work Redbridge to source support with other training – Customer Service skills, Conflict Management & Equality & Diversity; all skills that she already had, but had never had an actual certificate to show that she had the skills and understanding in these areas.

Meesha was really worried about starting back in education and thought that people would think she was too old and deem her lazy and stupid for not having found a job in 18 months but she was pleasantly surprised on her first day.  Meesha said that Pratibha made everyone feel so welcome to the class and that she felt really comfortable in the learning environment and would totally recommend us to anyone.  She thoroughly enjoyed her courses and gained skills in a new sector.

Meesha enjoyed her learning at Redbridge Institute so much and especially being taught by Pratibha. She said that as a result of doing these courses she had the confidence to apply for different roles and had had two interviews with Redbridge Council where she secured a role as a full time Customer Service Administrative Officer in the housing department. She recently got promoted from Admin Officer to Customer Service Officer and she has been approved to start an apprenticeship in Chartered Management which would help her gain knowledge and confidence to get a management post in Housing.

Mohammad Nawaz Jahaly - Various courses

When Mohammad moved from Chingford in 2015 Mohammad was looking for a place to carry on his learning. He decided to enrol on a course with the Institute after reading positive online learner feedback. He also checked the location, facilities, structure, variety of courses and architecture which all appealed to him.

Mohammad is a self-confessed ‘lifelong learner’ and likes to keep himself mentally and physically active and says that “there is no end to learning, it helps in life, your career and with further educating yourself, it keeps your mind active; the brain is like a muscle, the more you use it, the better it becomes.” 

Since starting with Redbridge Institute Mohammad has completed a variety of different courses starting with IT Beginners, then going onto complete Childcare L1, Award in Education and Training L3, Counselling L2, ITQ L1, Community Interpreting L2, Preparing to start as a TA L2 and the Maths challenge.  Mohammed said that all of the courses have helped him with updating his CV as a job seeker, by helping him keep up to date with current skills and knowledge as well as multitasking.  He also said that the courses have helped with bonding and networking with other students which has resulted in new friendships.

Mohammad said that the support that he has received from the tutors has been very encouraging and as a result he will carry on being a learner at Redbridge Institute.  He said that the flexibility of the courses for parent with young children like him remove the barriers to learn.

Mohammad has recently gained full time employments at St Thomas’s Hospital as a Nursing Assistant and is awaiting his start date.  Although Mohammad’s background is in teaching he is looking forward to a change of career and said that all of the courses have helped him to get to where he is today.