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Friday, 20 May 2011

Adult Learners' Week in Croydon libraries...Shhhh!

Adult Learners' Week activities, taking place in Croydon libraries this week, have not been promoted by the Council.

There are no details in the local press, nor publicity via the Council's 'Your Croydon' publication, the latest 'Your Croydon' email newsletter or even via the otherwise very active @yourcroydon twitter account. Nor is it easy to find on line on  Croydon Council's website.

Yet it seems that the Council are able to publicise just one event they are running under the banner of Adult Learners' Week; a session on conflict resolution in the workplace. This has been tweeted by Your Croydon and the whole raft of events being run on Business Support initiatives, of which this session is part,  has been emailed direct to some library users. It seems there are avenues to publicise events, should the Council wish to do so.

Adult Learners' Week, or as Croydon refer to it, Adult Learners Week, (perhaps, we suspect, as a result of a drive by Sara Bashford to eradicate unnecessary pesky apostrophes) isn't listed under the easily identifiable Libraries link on the home page nor are any of the activities listed under the main Events tab.

The whole week of events could easily pass unnoticed unless you happen to spot a poster in your local library, should you happen to visit this week, should it be open on a day convenient to you.

But why the reticence to advertise?

Could it be, perhaps, that the Council is concerned that having lost so many staff (23 in fact, so far) in the unannounced 'internal reshuffle', undertaken before a Libraries 'reprieve' was announced, they might well be a little pushed to host any events if residents were alerted and actually chose to attend?

Or could it be that the Council is seeking to hid yet another sham;  by listing events already going on in libraries such as Rock and Rhyme (under 5's), Wiggle and Jiggle (under 5's), Baby Rhymetime (under 5's), Storytime (under 5's), Knit and Natter (for adults) under the guise of special events for Adult Learners' Week?

Or is it just that little effort or time had gone into planning or delivering anything special for Croydon for this international event, celebrating its 20th successful year in 2011.

To save you the trouble of searching on the council's website to access the programme for the week you can find it here.

Do the activities on offer in Croydon ring true with the aims of Adult Learners' Week? Here are just a few of the sound bites from the main Adult Learners' Week site, from adults truly engaged in and inspired by well targeted, planned and delivered activities for adults.
"I was broken and had nothing, but I now have ambition and dreams"
 "My confidence has grown and I feel I have a real opportunity to achieve my goals."
 "You only get one chance at life, so I don’t intend to waste it." 
" I never knew learning could be this adventurous, fun and enjoyable."

So be quick!  Grab your places!

That is, if you can muster any interest in the  programme on offer.

That is, if you can actually find out when the event is running as many of the times are not listed.

And of course if the event isn't cancelled, without notice, as has been the case this week.

Croydon 'Proud to Serve', apparently.  And as Sara Bashford has assured us, regarding the loss of 23 highly qualified library staff even before any official cuts have been decided:
“It’s going to affect the libraries, but I don’t actually think people will see a huge difference."
 Well, that's reassuring, isn't it?

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