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Creative English Graduation Day in Luton

Monday 27th October 2014 saw the second of our Luton hub’s graduation ceremonies.  It was a tremendous privilege to be invited to join this – a real landmark in the lives of all the ladies involved!

Staff, students and their children and even a daughter-in-law all met at the Oasis Drop-in Centre in St. Augustine Avenue and we kicked off with some Creative English-style games. We particularly liked ‘You, me, left, right’! Although I got down to the last two, I was finally splatted by a quick-thinking student, mainly because I allowed my mind to wander over the issue ‘Is a courgette a fruit or a vegetable?’!!!  (If this sounds a bit random, the game’s instructions can be found in the new Term 2 book of session plans!)

There were 10 students who received certificates that day, and of them, 9 are going on to local colleges to study ESOL at various levels.  The only reason the tenth one is not is down to the fact that she is heavily pregnant!

Amongst the group were a bunch of younger learners from Pakistan.  Some had known each other back there, but not all.  They have become quite firm friends and didn’t really want to leave at the end – they were definitely the last ones to go! The Centre offers drop-in facilities on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9 till 3 where they chat, drink tea and support in a very wide range of family and personal issues that arise.  The young ladies were encouraged to pop in again on one of these days, so that they could keep in touch.

It’s great to be able to involve the wider families – at its heart, Creative English was born out of a genuine, demonstrable need to increase a sense of belonging, and this is where it starts, with small steps in the right direction.

After the formalities we all shared some food together – all prepared by students and staff. I would thoroughly recommend the pakora from Wajdha and the lemon drizzle cake from Sara!  And of course, there were the inevitable photographs!

What a wonderful bunch!