Gaining Confidence

Young learner of the year award winner

Lewis Jones, a learner from our 16 − 18 Study Programme, found that learning with us has given his confidence a real boost and helped him to get on in life and become more ready for work.


Lewis started in September 2012 on the Foundation Learning programme. He was referred by the Bolsover MAT Young Persons Advisor due to his high levels of anxiety.

Initially, he was brought in each day by the Programme Manager and in the first few weeks he struggled to stay in class more than two hours. This gradually improved to staying a full day, then two full days. However, throughout most of his first year he didn't communicate with any other learners.

Lewis returned on September 2013 to start the Pre-Apprenticeship course and completed all elements, including serving in the coffee bar. This meant talking to customers, which was remarkable progress.

Lewis agreed to a work placement in Limestone House, a resource centre, where he helped in the centre in a variety of roles. Although he struggled to attend, with continuous support he completed the placement. This gave him the confidence to attend a short course for students with anxiety at West Nottinghamshire College prior to September 2014.

He is still at college and travels in on the college bus: something that would have been unthinkable two years ago. He was awarded DACES Adult Learners' Week Young Learner of the Year Award in 2014 and was so proud of this. His parents are amazed at the progress and thankful we liaised with them each time he faced a difficulty.

Lewis says

"I have grown in confidence and met new kinds of people I wouldn't have and got some qualifications."