Southall gets WELL


Catalyst Gateway in partnership with the London Academy for Social and Economic Development, The Pre School Learning Alliance and Ealing Council have secured funding from the government’s Skills Funding Agency as part of the new Adult and Community Learning Fund, to reach out and inspire residents of the Windmill Housing Estate in Southall to get involved in informal learning activities and groups.

Activities will focus around the Windmill Community Centre, which is in the centre of the estate. The WELL (West London Learning Leaders) project will work over the coming 6 months or so with a group of residents from the estate, giving them training, support and confidence to ensure their groups continue and flourish.

Colin Gilfillan, Director of the London Academy, said: “whether you want help to make the most of your interests and hobbies or you want to explore how you can turn your ideas into a business, WELL is a great way to get involved. We are really excited about working with local people to help them develop their confidence and skills.”

The Adult and Community Learning Fund, from the Skills Funding Agency and managed by NIACE, will contribute to the Government’s aspirations for Informal Adult and Community Learning. The Fund will help to support independence, personal development, mental/physical health and well-being, digital inclusion, democratic engagement, social cohesion and stronger families and communities.

Geoff Russell, Chief Executive of the Skills Funding Agency, said:  “Each project that has secured funding from the Adult and Community Learning Fund will make a tremendous difference to the lives of individuals and to the communities they are part of. Skills and lifelong learning should be at the heart of every community and the Government is committed to making that happen with its vision for the Big Society.”

Carol Taylor, Deputy Chief Executive of NIACE, added,  “NIACE is proud to have the role of supporting Skills Funding Agency in managing the Adult and Community Learning Fund. The response to this bid has been staggering – we received over 2400 bids. Deciding which of the projects should receive funding has been incredibly tough, however this means that the very best projects are now starting work and transforming the lives of local people and local communities.”

For further information on the WELL initiative please contact:   Kerry Starling, on  0845 437 9705 at Catalyst Gateway, or Liz Mackie, at The London Academy for Social and Economic Development,

About the London Academy: The London Academy for Social and Economic Development was set up to pilot good ideas and promote networking and exchange of ideas and practices among people working in economic and social development across the world. The London Academy is based in The Grange, a 17th Century manor house in Neasden, North west London.  For further information please contact Colin Gilfillan, Director, London Academy for Social & Economic Development on 020 8974 8909 or or look us up on our website

About Catalyst Housing Group:  Catalyst Housing Group operates in an area of considerable housing demand, from central London along the Thames valley to Oxford and Reading. The Group plays an important role in providing affordable accommodation for those who would otherwise be excluded from the housing market, while its homes for key workers assist those providing essential public services to live close to their place of work. Catalyst is also the Government appointed HomeBuy Agent for Berkshire, Oxfordshire and Berkshire. In addition to low cost home ownership, Catalyst’s work also includes regeneration schemes, general needs housing, sheltered and special needs housing, residential care homes, and key worker accommodation plus various community based initiatives including training. Catalyst is the parent company of three housing associations: Catalyst Communities Housing Association, Fortunegate Community Housing and Kensington Housing Trust.

Posted by Ruth Djang

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