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Manukau Learning Centre Wins Award

11 November 2005

Manukau Learning Centre Wins Award

Adult learner Susie Mareangareu holding the award with Lady McCombs, Patrick McCombs’ mother, also pictured

Manukau City Council congratulates Te Puna o Wiri Community Learning Centre on winning the inaugural national McCombs-Rivers Dynamic Community Learning Award, presented at the launch of Adult Learners Week in Christchurch in September.

Council supported the establishment of the community programme, based at the Te Puna o Wiri Community Learning Centre at Wiri Central School, which was opened by the Prime Minister, Helen Clark in August 2004.

Filemoni Timoteo, Education Planner at Manukau City Council says the award is a credit to the facilitators and tutors at the Centre. “Te Puna o Wiri provides lifelong learning opportunities for the residents in Wiri Central and Rata Vine; it is a working example of how the school, its communities and Council have worked together to achieve Tomorrow Manukau’s educational goals of educated and knowledgeable people, at a local level.”

Suella Quinn, Te Puna o Wiri’s Community Education Coordinator, says “It was a real thrill to win the award after only our first year of operation. People attending the programme are from many cultural groups in our community and range from 10 to 90 years of age!

“We started in term four last year with 12 people, now we have 50 who consistently attend classes; we are providing programmes people requested, meeting the needs of our local community. We won because our programme strengthens communities; there are real opportunities for enhancing social cohesion.

“We employ a learning assistant to provide Samoan language support and provide a childminding service to enable parents to attend. Wherever possible tutors employed reflect our community, particularly in terms of ethnicity and culture.”

Courses are mainly run in the evenings and include computers (the most popular), tivaevae, ukulele/ukarere, English, Samoan language, Niue language, communication skills, cooking, and preparing a CV. The Centre also provides a study centre for secondary school students and has an 'open learning’ time where people can use school resources like the library.

To find out more about the learning programmes at Te Puna o Wiri or to enquire about hiring their facilities contact Wiri Central School: 262 0594


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