What We Do

Our experience in further education and skills, and the stories of our member organisations, learners, teachers and support staff, has shown us the impact of further education on individuals, communities and organisations. We want to emphasise this impact and help it go further. As a result a fourth area of the Group was formed: our Foundation.

Launched in May 2019, the Foundation champions social mobility in the further education and skills sector, highlighting the role further education and skills providers play in transforming people’s lives.

The Foundation does this by:

Becoming a voice for and raising the profile of social mobility

Engaging in project-based activity and research

Providing grants to learners

Recognising organisations, staff and learners for their work in improving social mobility

Funding

The Foundation provides grant funding for our members, to be used to support their learners. Our grants are designed to help learners overcome social barriers and to enable them to advance their skills in education. We will support applications from individuals that demonstrate their commitment and willingness to achieve. The types of grants we will fund include support for purchasing educational resources, contribution towards living and travel costs and much more.

Applications for grants are open on a rolling basis. To apply please complete the relevant application forms. Learners will need a supporting statement from their organisation before submitting an application. The Foundation team aim to process all applications within 21 days.

Representation

As a national organisation, we are in a strong position to raise the profile of the positive impact of further education on social mobility. We ensure that the interests of the further education and skills sector are represented at key national forums and in Parliament, developing key relationships and ensuring in the continuation of research into social mobility. To support, this the Foundation will develop publications that highlight and celebrate the role of further education and skills providers in driving social mobility.

Recognition

The work of further education organisations, staff and learners in improving social mobility deserves recognition. That’s why we hold an annual awards ceremony to celebrate the achievements of our member organisations, centres, providers, their staff, and their learners. Categories for next year’s awards will open in January 2020, along with the application forms and criteria.

As well as our own awards, we support the following initiatives: