Stephen Timms, the local MP for East Ham, presented awards to 12 young mums who, last week, achieved their Diploma (level 1 or 2) at Newham College's Get on Track Young Parents course.
The course, which is only in its second year, delivers childcare units alongside personal development training to young women whose education has been interrupted as a result of pregnancy. The course provides training in numeracy, IT and communication skills, offering a route into further education or work. One of the previous year's graduates, who spoke at the ceremony, is now training to be a nurse.
The graduation ceremony was organised entirely by the young graduates who spoke of their journey from motherhood to education. Many of the young women had not been able to complete their GCSEs and this diploma provides them with the core skills required by an employer.
Stephen Timms, who spoke at the ceremony and presented the women's certificates, said "These twelve graduates have made a remarkable investment that will benefit themselves and their children. This week, Mastercard pronounced London to be the world's most important commercial city; with the development that is happening in East London, that makes Newham an important place to live and work. The skills gained on this course will enable these young women to work and compete in London's vibrant economy."
The young women spend two days in the classroom at Newham College, and one day at the Well Community Centre with their children, learning about childcare. Free nursery place are provided by Newham College for parents under the age of 19 for the two 'college' days. The course director is Sally Mann. For more information call Newham College on 020 8257 4446.