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Q&A with Felicia, WM College Multiply Learner

Our mission at WM College is to provide diverse, enriching, and enjoyable lifelong learning, including skills for work, in a supportive environment for adults in Camden and the local area.  

The Multiply maths scheme is the perfect example of how we achieve this. The programme provides regular FREE maths workshops held at the College as well as within the community to help adults improve their understanding of numbers and numeracy for everyday life.

Recently, the WM College Multiply team ran a series of workshops at Castlehaven Community Centre called ‘Eat Well, Pay Less’ which aimed to help participants gain numeracy skills to plan shopping budgets, measure ingredients, and control portion sizes to support healthy eating for the whole family. 

We met up with Felicia, a WM College Multiply Learner, to hear about her experiences and how taking the time to invest in herself has opened up more doors.

Why did you enrol on the “Eat Well, Pay Less!” course

I enrolled on the course to help with my obesity and general bad food habits. My local council-run gyms recently became privatised which meant I was no longer able to access nutritional and fitness advice as easily.

So, nothing to do with maths then?  What was it in the course that triggered you to start thinking about maths? 

Measurement mostly. I didn’t have the knowledge of what 10g actually looks like or general cooking knowledge like how big a teaspoon measurement is. When we used the scales, I saw 3.6g and realised that I don’t know what that looks like.  I needed to learn more about portion sizes as well. 

What are you doing now? 

Having completed the course at Castlehaven I felt more confident and inspired to visit WM College. I’m proud to say that I’ve just started a maths course at the College, through the Multiply scheme, which will prepare me to move on to a GCSE maths course. Not having a maths qualification has held me back in lots of ways in life.

Did it require a big leap in confidence to come into college to enrol? 

Yes! It was brilliant to have the link with Castlehaven, having done the course there it really encouraged me to push myself a bit further. In the past it’s been too big a step. I’ve tried lots of times to enrol but decided it’s not for people like me. Having had bad experiences of education in the past I was put off going back into it and it’s affected lots of things in my life such as looking for work, so it’s brilliant now that I’m here and I shall encourage others to do the same.

If you’ve ever struggled with maths or want to improve your numeracy skills for life and work, WM College Multiply team can help. All the courses are free to London residents who do not have the basic UK maths qualifications that most employers require. Click here for more information or contact Peter Whitehead at peterw@wmcollege.ac.uk

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