We’re gathering evidence of the value and impact of adult and community education in Northern Ireland. A common thread bringing together adult and community education groups across Northern Ireland and the Republic is the desire to create more opportunities and choices for everyone, regardless of their experience or economic background.
Earlier this autumn, I travelled to Caserta in southern Italy for a meeting of the Erasmus+ BEEP Project. The BEEP (Basic Education and Empowerment for Political Participation) project looks at political participation for people who are excluded from democratic processes. This could be because of their legal status, their qualifications and skills, or due to a feeling of alienation in politics.
Last month, Ecem Akarca and Conor Thompson from the AONTAS Advocacy Team travelled to Greece with Marissa Hebron from Longford Women’s Link. This study visit was part of the RegALE Erasmus+ Project. Ecem, Marissa and Conor learned about Greek approaches to adult and community education.
A major negative outcome of the growing ‘digital divide’ between the digital haves and have-nots is that many of us are struggling with the phenomena associated with fake news, campaigns based on politics of fear and hate, and the damage this is doing to social cohesion and solidarity within Ireland and across Europe. AONTAS and its members have been aware of the threats that this poses to adult learners and their communities, which is why the organisation has undertaken a new EU project that seeks to build global citizenship and social cohesion within communities across Ireland with a focus on Digital Literacy.
In this blog post, AONTAS Project Officer for Capacity Building, Órla Mannion, highlights AONTAS’ involvement in a new Erasmus+ project that supports older adult learners.
On Day 1 of the AONTAS Adult Learners’ Festival 2021 (Monday, 1st March 2021), 85 participants joined a workshop that showcased the Learners as Leaders change-orientated adult learning methodology, the Irish model of community education, and learner voice activities.
From Tuesday 6th to Thursday 8th October 2020, EPALE hosted an Online Community Conference with thousands of attendees from across Europe. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, this year’s event took place in an online format, allowing participation from a broad group of stakeholders, from a range of sectors and countries in Europe and around the world.
AONTAS, the National Adult Learning Organisation, are proud to manage and implement a range of European projects in Ireland, as well as partnering with other adult education organisations across Europe to share learnings and develop best practice. Adult learning plays a central role in supporting individuals to engage in society and learn the skills required to benefit from digital transformation and overall civic participation.