All About ELATT

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Space in the Community: First Screening Event with Guest Speaker Colin Macleod

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Over 50 students (ages 16 -24) from the East London Advanced Technology Training (ELATT) school in Hackney participated in an educational space talk delivered by the UK Civil Aviation Authority. Colin MacLeod, Head of Space Regulation, showed how science fiction is becoming science fact using the film Gravity to explain the work being done to keep space clear of debris.

The event, hosted by ELATT at Rich Mix in Tower Hamlets, marked the beginning of a series of educational sessions designed to inspire students to pursue STEM careers, a programme supported directly by the UK Space Agency. 60% of the attending students, primarily from Hackney, Tower Hamlets, and other East London boroughs, have diagnosed special educational needs and disabilities, including autism and ADHD.

Gravity, starring Sandra Bullock and George Clooney depicts a Hollywood version of space activity. However, the very real challenge of keeping space clear of debris, and making sure satellites don’t fly around forever, is a major part of the work the Civil Aviation Authority does as the space regulator. Experts at the Civil Aviation Authority assess whether satellites are safe, and how they will be disposed of at the end of their mission, as well as monitoring over 700 objects in orbit

During his talk, Colin MacLeod discussed his role with students and provided insights into the UK space sector, emphasising the growing importance of space sustainability in light of increasing space debris. The Civil Aviation Authority’s STEM outreach programme aims to inspire children from diverse backgrounds, building aspiration, curiosity, and confidence.

  

Colin MacLeod, Head of Space Regulation at the UK Civil Aviation Authority said:
"STEM education is more important now than ever, and I'm thrilled to see the student’s enthusiasm for space. Talking to students helps show the real work going on behind the scenes today. We deal with real challenges of making space sustainable compared it to what’s made up for movies. I hope the day highlighted the importance of understanding our impact in space while igniting a passion for science.”

Anthony Harmer, CEO of ELATT said:
Nothing inspires our students more than meeting people who are leading and working in industry, so we were thrilled to welcome Colin today to our first film screening as part of our Space in the Community project. I'm sure that through the energy, knowledge and example set by Colin and his colleagues at the CAA our students will be seriously considering careers in such an exciting area of technology and human progress.

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Stellar Aspirations: Igniting Futures with 'Space in the Community'

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We are thrilled to announce our new project, 'Space in the Community,' an initiative designed to inspire and empower young people from disadvantaged and low-income backgrounds in Hackney, Tower Hamlets and East London. By introducing them to the wonders of space and the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM), this initiative —funded by the UK Space Agency— aims to provide a unique learning experience that combines education with excitement.

A Journey Through Space in the Community 

Space exploration represents one of humanity's most engaging frontiers. This project leverages the universal appeal of space to motivate and educate, making STEM subjects accessible and intriguing to students from varied backgrounds. By positioning space exploration at the forefront of education, we aim to inspire a generation of learners to envision their future in these fields, exploring the unknown and the potential for new discoveries.

Centred around a free monthly sci-fi film club and supported by our partners Odd Eyes Theatre, Rich Mix, and a variety of expert guest speakers, our students will host space film screenings, develop tech and written materials, and resources on the theme of space travel, leading to an exhibition in March 2025 of their work.

Our project aims are:

  • 50 students at ELATT will produce project work with the theme of space embedded into their curriculum of learning.
  • 7 film club showings and discussions at Rich Mix.
  • 12 presentations and joint activities with expert partners, corporate partners, and related campaigns.
  • A 1-week exhibition at Rich Mix of students’ work to promote space and space-related future careers open to members of the community.
  • New teaching materials for sixth-form students on the theme of space.


“We are looking forward to collaborate with ELATT’s students as they become Space Ambassadors, facilitating their vision to create unique content to share with other young people in their communities about Space and opportunities for careers in space.”

— Emilia Teglia, Odd Eyes Theatre

An Invitation to the Cosmos: Film Screenings at Rich Mix

Mark your calendars for our sci-fi film screenings at Rich Mix, a key component of our 'Space in the Community' project. These events are not just film showings; they are gateways to imagination, learning, and inspiration. Open to other schools and colleges for free, these screenings offer a blend of entertainment and education designed to spark curiosity and a love for space. More details will be announced soon, promising a galactic journey that you won't want to miss.

Screening Dates:

  • Tuesday, 21st May 2024
  • Wednesday, 26th June 2024
  • Tuesday, 24th September 2024
  • Thursday, 24th October 2024
  • Thursday, 28th November 2024
  • Tuesday, 21st January 2025
  • Wednesday, 26th February 2025


All screenings will take place from 10am to 2pm.

Engaging with the Cutting Edge

Our guest speakers - experts and professionals working at the cutting edge of space technology, climate, and careers - will share their insights, opening the doors to the endless possibilities within the space sector. This collaboration is crucial in bridging the gap between education and industry, providing students with a glimpse into their potential future careers.

Becoming a Space Ambassador

The journey doesn't end with learning; we are calling on space and tech companies to engage and mentor our students. If you work in space or tech and would like to mentor our students, please contact us.

Exploring Space Across the Curriculum

The project extends into the classroom where students will explore various aspects of space across different subjects, including space in the arts and entertainment, careers in space, technology programming and AI, and ethics. From creative writing about life in space in English class to developing space-themed computer games in Digital Media and Software Development, students will engage with the theme of space in diverse and innovative ways.

In conclusion, 'Space in the Community' is more than just a project; it's a gateway to the future, empowering students to explore, learn, and dream. By integrating space into education, we are not merely teaching students about the universe; we are illustrating their place within it.

We are in the process of finalising the list of guest speakers and activities, which promise to enrich our students' learning experience. Stay tuned for the latest information by following our social media accounts and visiting the 'Space in the Community' webpage.

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Celebrating Neurodiversity - How ELATT Supports Inclusion

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Neurodiversity Celebration Week shines a light on the importance of understanding and embracing neurological differences. This global initiative highlights the importance of understanding, recognising, and supporting neurodivergent individuals within our communities, schools, universities, and workplaces. By celebrating these differences, we can pave the way towards more inclusive and equitable cultures that not only recognise but also celebrate the unique talents and abilities of neurodivergent individuals. At ELATT, we're committed to this change, ensuring our students are equipped with the digital skills needed for today's workforce.

“Neurodiversity describes the different ways that we all think, move, hear, see, understand, process information, and communicate with each other.” *

Understanding Neurodiversity

Neurodiversity encompasses a range of neurological conditions, including autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and dyslexia, among others. The concept advocates for a shift in perspective, viewing these variations not as deficits but as natural and valuable diversity within the human brain. Despite this, neurodivergent individuals often face significant barriers and misconceptions, something Neurodiversity Celebration Week aims to change.

“Neurodiversity is as crucial for humans as biodiversity is for life in general.” *

The Challenges Faced by Neurodivergent Students

For many neurodivergent students, the journey through traditional education systems is fraught with hurdles. Academic and social challenges are compounded by environments that often do not cater to their unique learning and emotional needs. This can lead to heightened anxiety, a sense of alienation and difficulties in adapting to conventional teaching methods.

ELATT's Approach to Supporting Neurodivergent Students

ELATT, an educational institution with a strong commitment to supporting neurodiverse students, particularly those eyeing careers in the digital and tech sectors, offers an example of how to address these challenges. With a focus on small class sizes, personalised support, and a teaching assistant in every classroom, ELATT ensures that its students, who often require more support than is available in most colleges, receive the attention and care they need. This approach is especially crucial for students with conditions such as mild to moderate autism, ADHD and other neurological conditions as well as those facing physical disabilities.

The provision of on-site support, including education psychologists, counsellors, and emotional literacy assistants, underscores ELATT's understanding of its students' multifaceted needs. Acknowledging that high levels of anxiety can significantly hinder educational progress, ELATT's comprehensive support system is designed to restore confidence and competence in students who may feel discouraged by their past educational experiences.

Building Bridges to the Tech Industry

In addition to creating a supportive educational environment, ELATT extends its mission to bridge the gap between neurodivergent students and the digital and tech industries. Through partnerships with renowned tech and digital companies, ELATT facilitates work experiences and placements, ensuring a smoother transition for students from education to employment. These collaborations are not only beneficial for the students but also allow companies to tap into the unique perspectives and skills that neurodivergent individuals bring to the table.

“Studies and research from the likes of McKinsey have shown that diversity correlates with better financial performance, and Deloitte describe neurodiversity of thinking as the new frontier. However, there is a lack of more nuanced information about what specifically organisations need to do to genuinely become more neurodiverse.” *

Creating Neurodiversity-Friendly Environments

Creating an inclusive environment for neurodivergent individuals is a critical step towards building a society that values diversity and inclusivity. Here are five important steps towards creating neurodiversity-friendly environments:

  • Enhance Awareness and Education:
    Conduct training sessions for all staff/students to increase understanding of neurodiversity, covering topics such as autism, ADHD, dyslexia, and other neurodivergent conditions. Awareness programs should emphasize the strengths and challenges associated with neurodiversity, debunk myths, and promote a culture of inclusivity.

  • Implement Personalized Accommodations:
    Recognise that each neurodivergent individual has unique needs. Offer personalised accommodations, such as flexible work or study schedules, quiet spaces for work or relaxation, permission to use noise-cancelling headphones, and alternative formats for communication and learning materials. Encourage individuals to communicate their needs openly, ensuring confidentiality and respect.

  • Foster Inclusive Communication:
    Adopt communication strategies that cater to diverse needs. This includes clear, concise instructions, visual supports, and the flexibility to use written communication when preferred. Creating an environment where everyone feels comfortable expressing their preferred communication styles is key to fostering inclusivity.

  • Design Accessible Physical Spaces:
    Ensure that the physical environment supports neurodivergent individuals. This could involve creating sensory-friendly spaces with adjustable lighting and noise levels, providing quiet zones free from overwhelming sensory inputs, and ensuring that the layout and signage are clear and navigable for everyone, including those with sensory sensitivities.

  • Build a Supportive Community:
    Encourage peer support groups, mentorship programmes, and networking opportunities that connect neurodivergent individuals with allies and mentors. Promote an organisational culture that values diversity, encourages sharing of experiences and strategies, and actively involves neurodivergent voices in decision-making processes related to inclusivity initiatives.

By following these steps, workplaces and educational institutions can move towards creating environments that not only accommodate but also celebrate neurodiversity, leveraging the unique strengths and perspectives that neurodivergent individuals bring.

Neurodiversity Celebration Week serves as a vital reminder of the richness that neurodivergent individuals bring to our world. Through the dedicated efforts of institutions like ELATT and the broader community's commitment to inclusion, we can create spaces where every individual is valued and supported. Let us all take a step forward in celebrating neurodiversity, not just for one week, but all the time.

Credits and Resources:

* City & Guilds Neurodiversity Index Report

The official Neurodiversity Celebration Week website

10 STEPS to creating a neurodiverse inclusive environment, University of BATH

Supporting neurodiversity in education, UCL

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“40 Hours for 40 Years”: A Pledge for the Future of Tech Talent

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Throughout 2024 we are looking for ten companies to pledge forty hours each to mentor our ten student for four hours each.

In our 40th year, ELATT remains committed to a vision that uplifts and transforms lives, especially for those often overlooked by society. Our learners include the neurodiverse, refugees, migrants, and individuals from less privileged economic backgrounds in the heart of London. The hurdles they face are many – from few educational pathways to biases in the workplace, societal exclusion, and a lack of nurturing networks. At ELATT, we see these challenges not just as problems, but as chances to grow stronger, to help people find their strength, and to make a positive difference.

Our initiative, “40 Hours for 40 Years" is the next stage in this mission, transforming barriers into bridges that lead to fulfilling careers in tech and digital. This pledge is not just about volunteer hours; it's a commitment to shaping the next generation of professionals who will lead and innovate in a rapidly evolving digital landscape.

The Transformative Power of Mentoring

Why mentoring? The answer lies in the profound impact a mentor can have on a student's career trajectory. Through mentoring, students receive guidance, gain confidence, and develop professional skills that are crucial in today's competitive job market. The wisdom imparted by an experienced professional can ignite a passion, open doors to new opportunities, and set a foundation for lifelong career development.

For 40 years, ELATT has championed the cause of inclusive education and professional mentorship. Our past experiences have shown time and again that when students are supported by mentors, their development is not just incremental; it's transformational. Students evolve into professionals who not only enter the workforce but enhance it with their diverse perspectives and skills.

A Win-Win for Students and Employers

We have set an ambitious yet achievable goal: 100 students will receive a total of 400 hours of professional mentoring (4 hours each) by the close of 2024, and to do so we are looking for ten companies to each pledge 40 hours of support. It's a testament to the belief that investing in the future of tech talent is not just beneficial for the students, but also for the companies themselves.

By participating in this mentorship programme, companies have the opportunity to discover emerging talent and shape the individuals who could become their future innovators and leaders. Moreover, they play a vital role in demonstrating corporate social responsibility and investment in the communities they serve.

Join the Movement

We invite you to become part of this movement. Your expertise and time can unearth the potential of 100 future talents. It's a partnership where the return on investment is measured not just in hours, but in the lives changed and careers created.

For more information and to learn how you can become an industry partner in this mentorship programme, you can visit our mentoring page or contact us.

Join us as we pave the way for a future where London works for everyone, a future built on the foundations of education, empowerment, and the collective effort of our industry partners. Together, let's make "40 Hours for 40 Years" a milestone in the tech industry and an inspiration for the next generation of tech talent.

Please also see our related blog: "40 Hires for 40 Years", for a deeper look into how employment can be a vehicle for realising potential and fostering a diverse and thriving tech community.

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"40 Hires for 40 Years" – Celebrating Four Decades of Impactful Learning and Employment

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To celebrate 40 years of ELATT, help us bring 40 new tech talents into the digital workforce.

As ELATT celebrates its 40th anniversary, we look back not only on our long history of supporting Londoners into the workplace, but also want to pave a way forward. Our mission has always been to empower hidden talent - neurodiverse individuals, refugees, migrants, socio-economically disadvantaged Londoners. These groups face barriers such as limited access to quality education, difficulties in finding a job, social isolation, and a lack of supportive networks. So this year, we are proud to launch the "40 Hires for 40 Years" initiative; we ask for 40 companies to pledge to hire an ELATT student as an apprentice, intern or in a junior role to ensure that 40 new ELATT students can enter the tech/digital sector by December 2024.

This is a testament to our commitment to bridging the gap between talented individuals and the tech industry.

Employment Opportunities and Overcoming Barriers to Thrive 

Employment is not just about earning a living; it's about realising potential, fostering self-development, and contributing to the economy and society. For those from under-served backgrounds, the journey to employment is often fraught with barriers. At ELATT, we believe in breaking down these barriers, one hire at a time.

For many of our students, the journey to a fulfilling career is obstructed by more than just a lack of opportunity. Misconceptions about neurodiversity, language barriers or visa status for migrants create an uneven playing field. However, once given the chance, our students excel, overcoming these challenges to not only improve their personal and professional lives but also to bring new perspectives to the businesses that employ them. This is the ELATT difference – transforming lives through opportunity and support.

The success stories from our 2023 achievements blog resonate with the transformative power of opportunity, showcasing how our students have thrived in their lives.

Engaging Businesses in Social Change 

In the spirit of fostering a more inclusive and diverse workforce, we invite businesses to consider the multitude of benefits that come with employing our students. An inclusive workplace is not just a moral imperative; it's a strategic advantage. ELATT serves as a bridge, connecting untapped talent to industries ripe for innovation. Here's what Gurdeep Bhabra, Technical Project Manager – Training & Software at Opus 2, has to say:

"Working with the students from ELATT is an absolute pleasure. The dedication they show towards their studies and work placement course is commendable. Their ability to perform at a high level whilst balancing their studies highlights the hard work & commitment they have put into their course."

Our aim as a charity is to usher this new talent into the tech sector, creating a symbiotic relationship where forward-thinking companies not only diversify their workforce but also foster social change. By offering an opportunity to an ELATT student, you are poised to change a life – and the face of your workforce – for generations to come.

Join Us in Shaping the Future

The "40 Hires for 40 Years" initiative is more than a milestone celebration; it's a call to action for businesses across London and beyond. By engaging with this programme, you're not just filling a vacancy; you're changing a life and, potentially, the face of the tech industry. Your support can help us achieve our goal of integrating 40 ELATT students into the tech and digital sectors by December 2024.

Stay tuned for our upcoming blog post on the "40 Hours for 40 Years" initiative, where we delve into the power of mentorship and professional development in shaping the careers of our students.

Together, we can celebrate ELATT's 40 years of social impact by paving the way for the next generation of tech talent.

Interested in joining us towards a brighter, more inclusive future?

Learn more about our industry partnerships and how you can become a partner.

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Digital Literacy in Today's World: How ELATT is Bridging the Gap

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In today's rapidly evolving digital landscape, the importance of digital literacy cannot be overstated. As we move through the complexities of the 21st century, the need for digital literacy has become more crucial than ever. We at ELATT understand this shift and are committed to equipping our students with the essential digital skills needed for today's workforce.

Digital literacy is much more than just being able to use a computer or smartphone. It involves a deep understanding of digital tools, platforms, and the internet. In today's world, being digitally literate means you can confidently navigate the internet, do online tasks, send emails, create documents, shop online, create and edit photos and video, even understand basic code and design. It's about being skilled in the digital world, ensuring you can succeed in both your personal and professional life. Having digital skills opens up a world of opportunities. It can lead to better job prospects, continuous learning and development, and discovering new personal and professional possibilities. In an age where digital presence is almost as significant as physical presence, being digitally literate is crucial for effective communication, continuous learning, and accessing a myriad of online services and opportunities.

In a world where technology is closely linked with our daily lives, not having digital skills can be a major obstacle. It can stop people from accessing important services, connecting with others, and finding job opportunities. A lack of digital skills can lead to missed chances and feeling out of place in a world that's increasingly online. Recognising the critical role of these skills in modern life, we at ELATT have developed a comprehensive approach to ensure our students are not only digitally literate but also ready to thrive in an increasingly digital world.

Our Approach to Digital Literacy
We are dedicated to promoting digital literacy through a wide range of courses. From Digital Skills, IT for the Office to Digital Media Production, Software Development and Web Design courses we offer a curriculum that's designed for today's digital world. Our courses combine practical skills with important knowledge, making them both useful and relevant.

Digital Skills for ESOL Learners
We also recognised the unique challenges faced by ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) learners. To address this, we have developed specialised digital skills programmes specifically tailored for this demographic. These courses, designed for Entry Levels and Levels 1-2, focus on pivotal digital skills essential for everyday life. They cover fundamental aspects such as using the internet, email communication, online shopping and understanding online safety. The content is crafted to be accessible and engaging for ESOL learners, ensuring that language barriers do not impede the acquisition of crucial digital skills. With qualified ESOL tutors who possess IT specialisms, we ensure that students receive a learning experience that is both comprehensive and empathetic to their unique needs.

Essential Digital Skills
We also teach essential digital skills for other learners at Entry Level 3 to Level 1. Courses address the key digital skills needed for daily life including using the internet, communicating via email or social media, creating documents using MS office, online shopping, and online safety. These courses also help to progress to a vocational course at ELATT.

Digital Security
In today's digital age, it's not just about being skilled online; it's also about staying safe. We emphasize the importance of digital security in our courses. This includes learning how to engage with others safely online, protecting personal information, and understanding the basics of safeguarding against online threats. These skills are crucial for everyone in the digital world.

The true testament to ELATT's commitment to digital literacy lies in the success stories of its graduates. Individuals like Salma, Charles, and Frankie, who embarked on a transformative journey with ELATT, are now thriving in their respective fields, thanks to the digital skills they acquired. These success stories highlight the profound impact of digital literacy in shaping successful careers and fulfilling lives. They serve as a beacon of inspiration, demonstrating how digital literacy can open doors to new opportunities and enable individuals to reach their full potential.

As the world continues its rapid digital transformation, institutions like ELATT play a pivotal role in ensuring that no one is left behind. By championing digital literacy and offering tailored courses, ELATT is not just educating; it's empowering individuals to seize the opportunities of the digital age. Join the ELATT community today and be a part of this digital revolution. Embrace the opportunity to develop your digital skills and open up a world of possibilities in this digitally-driven era.

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ELATT's Comprehensive Wrap-Around Student Support: More Than Just Education

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At ELATT, we recognise that our students' needs extend far beyond the classroom. Our hands-on courses are not only relevant to the industry but also supplemented with additional support services and life-changing projects. With ELATT, you'll have everything you need to reach your full potential and advance your career.

Our comprehensive wrap-around support services are designed to nurture every aspect of student life, ensuring that education is accessible, achievable, and transformative.

Childcare Provision
Understanding the challenges of parenting students, ELATT provides on-site childcare and off-site childminding options. As one student reflected, “The staff is amazing. I received full support as a mum and student.”

Another student testimonial: "I had to enrol in an online course since I’m a busy mother. I signed up for Level 2 IT Office. ELATT was the finest option since I could study and take care of my housework without feeling stressed."

Travel Bursaries
Travel costs shouldn't be a barrier to education. ELATT's travel bursaries alleviate the financial strain, ensuring that every student can attend college without the worry of expense.

Wellbeing Service
Our wellbeing service is at the heart of our support system, offering wellbeing resources and sessions that cater to the holistic wellbeing of our students. "Wellbeing workshops boost your confidence and help you know more about yourself and how to take care of yourself better." a student shared, highlighting the service’s impact.

Data Plans and Device Loan
For our online learners, we provide data plans and loan devices, ensuring that everyone has the tools they need to succeed in the digital world.

Emergency Hardship Grants
When unexpected financial difficulties arise, ELATT's emergency grants offer a lifeline, ensuring that students can continue their studies without financial worry.

Signposting
ELATT's network of community partners means students are never alone, with signposting to specialist external agencies for a breadth of additional support.

Debt and Welfare Advice
Understanding financial stability is crucial for academic success, ELATT has partnered with Island Advice to offer bespoke debt and welfare advice. This partnership ensures students receive professional guidance to navigate financial challenges, enabling them to concentrate on their studies and future ambitions.

Employability Support
Our bespoke employability support includes CV writing, job search, interview skills, understanding the UCAS application process, and vocational options like apprenticeships. A student's testimonial captures the essence: "ELATT's commitment to providing quality education and facilitating career opportunities is commendable. I am grateful for the support, guidance, and encouragement I received throughout my journey with them."

The ELATT Careers Service
At the core of ELATT's vision is empowering our students with the skills essential for thriving in life and their careers. A vital component of this mission is providing each student with professional, independent career advice from qualified specialists. This guidance complements the comprehensive employability support and hands-on work experience opportunities we offer.

We're proud to collaborate with our career partner, Prospects, and a variety of industry partners. These collaborations enhance our ability to equip students for success in the ever-evolving job market.

“Their staff are very friendly, knowledgeable and helpful towards guiding you in the correct direction to learn, move forward and succeed in finding a suitable job within a career that best fits your skills. I would highly recommend signing up for and studying at ELATT if you want to find direction, skills/knowledge, and confidence in getting into a career you will thrive in."

For more details on ELATT’s careers service and support, visit the ELATT Careers Service page.

Innovative Projects at ELATT

ELATT's commitment to holistic education extends into innovative projects that have a profound community impact. The 'Equal Voices' supports migrant women in Hackney, Tower Hamlets and Waltham Forest to become community leaders who take action on issues affecting their neighbourhood.

Another pioneering project, 'Connected Youth', is an integrated programme of skills training, employability and personal development that connects young Londoners to digital careers.

These projects underscore ELATT's role as an educational pioneer, not just in the classroom, but in creating real-world opportunities that resonate with societal needs.

We believe every student, regardless of background or abilities, is entitled to the education and care essential for success. We also work to provide tailor-made support for students with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND). We strive to be a beacon of hope and a testament to what is achievable when every individual is given the chance to thrive.

Each of these services is designed to empower our students, helping them to overcome barriers and achieve their full potential. ELATT is not just about education; it's about building a foundation for life.

For more inspiring success stories, take a look at our summary of some of our remarkable achievements of 2023, witness the empowering potential we nurture and explore our impact on individuals and communities.

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A Reflection on ELATT's 2023 Achievements

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As we step into 2024, it’s a perfect time to look back at the past year and celebrate the remarkable achievements we saw at ELATT throughout the year.

This past year stands as a testament to our commitment to lifelong learning, community engagement, and the empowerment of our students. Let's dive into the stories that have shaped ELATT's journey and look forward to celebrating four decades of transformative education.

2023 marked another year of ELATT’s dedication to providing an inclusive and supportive environment for students of all ages. Our Sixth Form department and adult education programmes have continued to be pillars of growth, change, and progression, enriching the lives of over 850 learners and contributing widely to the broader community in terms of skills, knowledge and jobs.

Inspirational Student Success Stories:

* Learner names have been changed in the interests of confidentiality.

Michael - Overcoming Language Barriers with Music and Art:
Michael, an Eritrean refugee, arrived at ELATT with limited literacy in his native language and no knowledge of English. However, 2023 marked a significant turn in his educational journey. With dedicated one-on-one support, Michael transitioned from recognising basic words to confidently sounding out and understanding more complex English vocabulary. His newfound language skills have boosted his social interactions and overall confidence. Michael’s musical and artistic talents have been harnessed as part of his learning, with a teaching assistant helping him learn the ukulele, enhancing his vocabulary and grammar through music.

Ethan - Building Confidence and Skills for a Brighter Future:
Ethan, a Sudanese refugee, started at ELATT with limited English and low confidence. His time here has been transformative, thanks to the nurturing environment and comprehensive support system. ELATT's keyworkers and a career guidance programme helped Ethan secure a bike maintenance work placement, where he has received exemplary feedback for his growing expertise and improved social and English skills. Even after leaving the Sixth Form, ELATT continues to support him, assisting in his CV preparation and further work placement opportunities.

Nick - From Asylum Challenges to Community Leadership:
One of our Life Skills students, who has been in the asylum process for many years, faced significant mental health challenges and low confidence upon joining ELATT. Through participation in wellbeing sessions and English language progress, he has improved both his mental and physical health. Notably, he earned a Mental Health First Aid certificate and became a key member in establishing a peer support group at the Wellbeing Service, focusing on the experiences of seeking asylum. His journey from a hesitant participant to a leading facilitator exemplifies the empowering impact of ELATT's supportive community.

Lucy - From Language Beginner to Community Contributor:
Starting as a beginner in ELATT's classes, Lucy’s determination advanced her to the Entry 3 level in English. Her confidence has soared, enabling her to support her family in practical ways and actively participate in organising events. She's also set to volunteer at the community centre, showcasing her commitment to giving back to the community that supported her growth.

James - Crafting Fashion and Stories:
James, a talented Nigerian fashion designer and an ESOL student at ELATT, has an inspiring story. Fleeing the war in Ukraine, he found refuge in the UK and was referred to a workshop at the London College of Fashion by one of the teachers, who knew about his skills. His exceptional skills led to organising workshops at LCF, offering refugees and artisans a platform to explore their skills and stories together.

Highlights from 2023 at ELATT:

  • Over 35 of our students volunteered at ELATT and other organisations in 2023, and more than 20 secured new jobs, reflecting their hard work and dedication.
  • Our industry partner Mimecast showcased our work together in their 2023 Annual Report, highlighting the successful collaboration and impact on our students and the community.
  • We launched the "Equal Voices" project to foster inclusivity and amplify diverse voices within our community.
  • Some of our Sixth Form students had the incredible opportunity to attend the Headliners' 2023 Summer Residential in the Yorkshire Dales, in 2023 summer.
  • We held the Working West London end-of-project celebration event to acknowledge the project's achievements and the transformative impact it has had on the lives of refugees.

As we celebrate ELATT’s 40th year in 2024, we not only look back on a year of significant achievements but also embrace this ongoing journey of lifelong learning and empowerment. Each student's journey, each community project, and each success story contribute to our enduring legacy. We are excited about the future and the continued impact of ELATT's commitment to education and community.

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International Volunteer Day at ELATT: Empowering Londoners

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It's International Volunteer Day 2023, and at ELATT, we want to celebrate the incredible contributions of our volunteers. Today, we shine a light on the diverse and impactful volunteering opportunities available at ELATT, inviting Londoners to join us in making a meaningful difference.

The Essence of Volunteering at ELATT

ELATT, located in the vibrant heart of London, is a centre of learning and personal development. We offer a variety of fulfilling volunteering roles. Our volunteer opportunities range from administrative to teaching assistant support to innovative roles within our Wellbeing Service. Each volunteer at ELATT plays a vital role in our mission to empower individuals through education and support.

You can volunteer as an Administrative Assistant which is an exciting opportunity for someone to gain valuable administration experience in a dynamic London charity, supporting the day-to-day work of ELATT community projects.

You can also volunteer as a Teaching Assistant, and this is open to anyone who wants to gain some teaching experience in an informal setting or someone who simply wants to contribute by volunteering their spare time. If you are interested in supporting adults with English as a second language, this is a great opportunity.

Additionally, our Wellbeing Service (WBS) provides volunteering opportunities for those with basic IT skills and an interest in health and wellbeing. Our WBS volunteers are crucial in running workshops and supporting our Wellbeing Service, directly impacting our students' lives.

Why Volunteer with ELATT in London?

Volunteering in London with ELATT offers a chance to contribute to the educational and personal development of diverse individuals. The benefits of volunteering extend to the volunteers themselves, often leading to enhanced skills, increased confidence, and a sense of fulfilment.

Hearing from our previous volunteers offers genuine insight into the impact of volunteering with ELATT.

Mary Curtis, a volunteer, shares, "What drew me to ELATT is that the tutors and staff really have the students' best interests at heart, going above and beyond to provide additional resources and support."

Faida, another volunteer, says, "ELATT is a friendly welcoming, caring and supportive working environment. Strong work ethic among staff. Provided opportunity to learn new skills. I especially appreciate the support I was given towards finding work."

Liz Savage, a Volunteer Teaching Assistant, praises the staff for being friendly and helpful, "Definitely the staff was the best thing. They are friendly, very helpful, very experienced and share. They find individual solutions for everyone.”

Our Wellbeing Service volunteer shares, "Volunteering at the Wellbeing Service at ELATT was a great experience. It helped me build on the skills, and abilities I have. I became more confident and improved my self-esteem. After helping students understand ways to wellbeing through my workshop, I felt excited and glad that I can have an impact on them, which makes me do more. I can see myself making a long-term commitment with motivation. I enjoy working with the WBS team it was a pleasure for me."

Join Us This International Volunteer Day

This International Volunteers Day, we invite Londoners to become part of the ELATT community that values and supports individual and societal growth. Whether you're interested in voluntary work in education, administrative opportunities, or volunteering in support of wellbeing, ELATT has a role for you, including remote options like our Wellbeing Service.

As we celebrate International Volunteer Day at ELATT, we want to reaffirm our commitment to fostering a community where everyone can contribute and grow. Volunteering with ELATT is not just about giving back; it's about being part of a movement that shapes a brighter future for our community.

Ready to make a difference in London? Your journey towards impacting lives and enriching your own starts here!

Visit our Volunteering Page to explore the various volunteering positions available at ELATT:
Our Volunteering Page

Find out more about our Wellbeing Service:
Our Wellbeing Service

Find out more about Our Training:
Our Training

And our Learning Model:
Our Leaning Model

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Empowering Potential: ELATT's Impact on Persons with Disabilities

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The International Day of Persons with Disabilities spotlight on the hurdles faced by disabled individuals, particularly within educational environments where they often confront substantial barriers. This day is a reminder and a call to action, emphasizing the necessity for inclusive and accessible education for all.

At ELATT, we stand committed to this cause. Our mission is clear: every student, regardless of background or abilities, is entitled to the education and care essential for success. In a world that frequently overlooks the disabled, ELATT works to provide tailor-made support for students with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND). It strives to be a beacon of hope and a testament to what is achievable when every individual is given the chance to thrive.

Imagine the daunting prospect of being a young person with special needs in an overcrowded classroom. Or the challenge for teachers striving to meet each child's needs against a backdrop of limited resources and support. This is the daily reality in many educational institutions, where the sheer number of students in each class leaves too many behind.

At ELATT, we understand that every young person deserves time, care, and attention to truly thrive. That's why our classes are intentionally small, with no more than twelve students, ensuring personalised support. Every student with special needs benefits from one-to-one interactions with specialist Teaching Assistants, Educational Psychologists and Keyworkers. This philosophy has led to remarkable outcomes: in the 2022-2023 academic year, over 90% of our students with autism achieved their final qualification, significantly higher than the national average.

Our resolve to maintain small class sizes and personalised support ensures that each young person receives the one-on-one support they need. This approach has proven to be effective, as demonstrated by the experiences of our students, like Emma and Daniel.*

* Learner names have been changed in the interests of confidentiality.

Emma's story illustrates the effectiveness of ELATT's supportive environment. With an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) tailored for her mixed special educational needs, including autism, ELATT provided her with a nurturing ground to grow. She embarked on a journey with our Business certificate for IT level 2 and GCSE English courses, gaining not just qualifications but also invaluable life skills. Her successful work experience at a tech company, secured through ELATT's support, has been a stepping stone to greater independence and confidence.

Similarly, Daniel showcases the transformative effect of ELATT's approach. Starting with no qualifications and significant mental health challenges, his perseverance and the customized support at ELATT led him to pass his GCSE English, Functional Skills Maths, and Advanced Level 3 qualification in ICT. Now, he's on his way to a degree at Birkbeck University, an inspiring example of the journey from potential to achievement.

The voices of our families echo the impact of our work. One testimonial shares,

"ELATT is the perfect place to advance young adults with additional needs. They see potential where nobody else does. My son has been at ELATT for three years. He has managed to gain skills and knowledge to help him get into university to make his future bright. The staff are exceptional and nothing is too much trouble. I wish there was more places like ELATT to help these young people better their selves, if ELATT had more funding, they could do many more things to help these young people towards a future."

It's a powerful reminder of the difference we can make with the right goal and the right resources.

As we mark the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, we invite you to reflect on these stories and join us in our mission. Support ELATT and be part of a community that believes in empowering every individual to reach their full potential.

Your support could be the catalyst for the next success story. Together, we can create a world where education is a gateway to opportunity for all, regardless of their needs.

Support ELATT and help us continue to transform lives!

Learn more how you can support ELATT:
Our Supporters

Find out more about our courses:
Our Courses

Find out more about Our Training:
Our Training

And our Learning Model:
Our Leaning Model

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