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The Launch of FRED+ in 2017
The ‘launch event’ at Forest Community Church on Tuesday 3rd October 2017 was really well attended and made the local press – see below. FRED PLUS is our response to increasing demand to include extended reading activities and early writing skills. Our Chair, Roger Deeks opened the event and Kris, our trainer, gave a brief overview of the rationale for FRED Plus and what it will offer for current and potential Learners. Lady Bathurst then officially launched FRED Plus. She has held a lifelong interest in adult literacy work and has supported literacy development in prison education.
One of our Learners, Sabrina, gave a brief talk about her book The White Giant, which she has written and published with the help of her Coach Katrina.
Some newspaper articles about Sabrina and the launch.
Additional Training and AGM – 13th March 2017
Additional Training Session
The recent reading Coach meeting was really well attended by newly trained and more experienced coaches. Coaches shared their experiences in small groups and we heard some great stories about learner success. There was also a ‘hands on’ activity on how to get the best from these resources. The Q & A session enabled Coaches to discuss various challenges and to come up with some solutions. One of the main things which came out of the discussions is how diverse our Learners are!
Evaluations suggested Coaches would have liked more time looking at resources, so we’ll run another session in a couple of months.
After the training session, more Coaches and some of the Management Team joined us for tea and cakes. Chair, Roger Deeks, then led a short AGM.
Kris talked about our proposed launch of FRED+ which we hope will broaden our offer to a wider group of Learners. Willing coaches will work with Learners on extended reading activities tailored to each individual. Early writing skills will also be available. We are planning to revamp our existing publicity material and shared a draft copy of our leaflet to gauge opinion. Feedback was generally positive so watch this space.
Janet, our Treasurer outlined the financial position and reported on a number of grants received from local organisations. There have been constant financial pressures on FRED, many of which have been alleviated by the voluntary efforts of Coaches and committee members.
Roger outlined statistics and evidence demonstrating the continuing need for FRED. The Trustees’ responsibilities were outlined and three were elected. The Chair invited anyone who was interested in being a Trustee, supporting the work of the committee, or who had a question about governance to contact Jennifer (Secretary) or Roger (Chair). Roger thanked the Committee, made up of Kris, Sheila, Megan, Janet, Ann and Jennifer for their hard work and commitment over the last year. Lastly the coaches, who volunteer so much time, were thanked as without their support FRED would not be possible.
New Coach Training Session November 2016
A successful training day for 10 new reading Coaches was held recently at the Town House in Coleford.
Additional Training and Tea Party – 18th July 2016
The latest additional training session focused on getting started with writing -considering some of the skills involved and the resources available. It was a lively session and the Coaches enjoyed sharing experiences and working together on the group activities.
The Tea Party after the training session also went well – the weather was once again on our side and it gave everyone a chance to relax and chat in pleasant surroundings.
Additional Training Session – 22nd February 2016
Development Training and Tea Party
Kris recently ran a very successful Development Training session at the Forest Community Church, where 10 reading Coaches worked in small groups to create some activities to go alongside our audio books.
After a lively and productive couple of hours, afternoon tea was served as a thank you to all concerned. The sun shone and it was a lovely way to end the afternoon, chatting and enjoying the delicious home-made cakes!
Ann and Kris at the Coleford Busking Festival
“Kris and I had a good day yesterday at the Busking Festival. Quite a lot of interest from would-be volunteers and Learners!
It was a great venue, the day flew past the music was good to great and the sun shone and Jennifer, bless her heart turned up with a flask of coffee.
All in all a really good FRED experience!”
Yorkley Community Centre
FRED was pleased to be part of the official opening of the new Yorkley Community Centre on 18th April. Hundreds of people turned out to admire the brand new centre which includes a large main hall., a room for smaller meetings as well as an office and kitchen.
The FRED stall attracted a lot of interest and several people were keen to attend the next Coach training. Many leaflets were given out which hopefully will encourage new learners to come forward.
It’s great to have a new venue available for our 1:1 pairs and we also hope to use it for the training of our new reading Coaches.
Extension Training Session
This took place recently in Cinderford and was an opportunity for Coaches and prospective Coaches to share their experiences. There was a lovely atmosphere in the room as Coaches chatted and discussed ways to develop their coaching skills and worked together on ideas for activities to support reading.
Kris also gave an update on FRED’s current projects and plans for the future.
Katrina’s home-made cake added to a very enjoyable and productive morning!
Talking Books Project
FRED was recently awarded a £500 community grant from the Forest of Dean District Council. This money is being used to fund a project working with Forest Talk to record our current stock of readers which will enable our Learners to practise their reading skills at home.
USBs have been bought and the recording sessions have begun with several of our reading coaches giving up their time to help. More recording sessions are planned and there are also plans to produce workbooks to go alongside the recorded books
Sheila with other recipients of money donated by Severn Dean Lions to several local charities. FRED Management Team member Ann Kent is also there representing another charity – very busy lady!
Sheila and Janet with Waitrose staff receiving a large cheque (!) for £185 raised from the company’s Community Matters green token scheme.
From the Gloucester Citizen – 25th February 2015
Right said FRED – who’s reading?
It’s not something that is talked about often but many adults find reading difficult, for whatever reason. This can have a negative effect on personal relationships, job prospects and in so many other ways. Imagine not being able to read your child a bedtime story or not being able to read the instructions on medication prescribed by the doctor.
Help is at hand
FRED – Forest Read Easy Deal – is an award-winning local charity that provides free, confidential, one-to-one coaching for adults throughout the Forest of Dean. FRED matches learners with trained coaches and typically they meet for two thirty minute sessions each week at a time and place that suit them both. Lessons are confidential so anyone can learn comfortably at their own pace.
And FRED is free.
Do you know an adult in the Forest of Dean who would like to improve their reading? If so tell them about FRED.
You can find out more on the website forestreadeasydeal.org.uk or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
The mobile number is 07746 371353