What a year.
2016 has had some massive moments. Britain had a brain fart and left the security and economic benefits of the EU. The All Blacks lost a game. Trump! And then John Key went and threw in the towel.
If you digest the national news, life seems like it’s going a bit pear shaped.
Social media is awash with memes showing “what 2016 did to me”. They’re actually great: check some out here.
And that’s why we want to bring some real life good news back into your life. Because here in the Adult Learning Support universe we’ve had a big and – quite frankly – fantastic year.
So I’m going to handover to Cameron now to take you through our year.
Haere ra… haere mai!
This year we’ve seen several significant staffing changes at ALS. In July we farewelled our stalwart Lead Tutor: Jeanie. This was soon followed by Steve, our Marketing and Communications Guru, in August. And this week we’re saying goodbye to the wonderful Tutor Sally.
Of course, the change in the fabric of our small organisation is substantial. Old networks to be renewed, new skills to be learned, while always making sure relationships and processes don’t get overlooked in the handover.
Fortunately, we’ve had some top notch new talent join the team. Kei is an experienced tutor who has brought great pearls of laughter and a deep knowledge of tikanga Maori to our workplace. Kia ora Kei! Paul’s energy, clear communication and strategic brain are a huge asset to the office – not to mention his patience when sorting our computing problems.
I want to take this opportunity to thank those three departees. Jeanie, Steve and Sally: each of you has brought so much to the learners here at ALS. Thank you for your dedication, patience and experienced guidance!
Stepping up and taking the lead
The capability of our organisation was wonderfully demonstrated this year with the hosting of the National Launch of Adult Learners’ Week. We organised a Te Tiriti o Waitangi workshop in collaboration with NMIT. And of course we ran a host of literacy and numeracy based programmes: a workplace programme for The Warehouse Ltd, a dyslexia course, four computing courses, two Parenting and Life Skills courses, four Work Fit courses, and Fresh Tracks – a life skills and literacy course for young men.
We’ve participated in fundraisers – with a pub quiz and the Lion’s Charity Gold Tournament.
We’ve hosted tutor professional development, morning teas and grown our substantial network in the Nelson/Tasman region.
All together, we’ve helped to educate over 250 people in Nelson and Tasman.
A massive thank you
So this is a big seasonal THANK YOU to all the people and organisations who support us to make these achievements a reality. First and foremost: thank you to our tutors, staff, volunteers and Governance Committee.
We could not do what we do without the support of all our sponsors. We are incredibly grateful for your support!
Here they are in no particular order (because we appreciate every organisation that gives what it can): Avoca Design, Air Rescue and Community Services, John Ilott Trust, Business Development Company, Tasman District Council, Nelson City Council, Rate Foundation, Page and Blackmore, Pipedrive, Network Tasman, Lottery Grants Board, Mainland Foundation, The Lion Foundation, Community Organisation Grants Scheme, Zumo, Red Art Design Cafe, Vodafone, Prices Pharmacy, and Canva.
So what about 2017?
Many of the same challenges will exist for us in 2017. The Government continues to restrict the availability of funding for our learners, meaning we’re relying more and more on our sponsors. The ComVoices Report describes the challenges faced by the entire community sector.
However, 2016 showed us we can bring in new money through business clients. And so we look forward to building new relationships next year, and growing the reach of our crucial services.
We’ve just announced our 2017 course list for next year – so check them out!
Have a wonderful break, and we’ll see you next year!