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2017 Deesha Awards Ceremony

Published: 17 Jul 2017


On Wednesday 12th July, Osmani Primary School hosted an award ceremony for our 2017 Deesha ESOL students.

Toynbee Hall, in partnership with the E1 Schools Partnership runs Deesha, an ESOL project dedicated to improving levels of English, communication and numeracy. Our aim is to improve local people’s confidence in dealing with everyday issues effectively, support their children’s learning, access local services and engage with the local community.

In 2016/17, Deesha saw a record number of students enrol; a total of 282, but due to personal circumstances some students were unable to complete the course. This year, we also had the first ever men’s group complete the course.

The ceremony began with an inspiring speech from one of the former students, Wahida, who began her journey with Deesha in 2013. Wahida gained her Level 1 and Level 2 qualifications and was then invited to join the Deesha team as tutor and has been teaching the students this year.

Today I would like to say to all of the students here, please carry on with your studies and do not stop until you achieve your goals. From my experience, I can tell you that if you put your mind to something you will be able to do it. Don’t be scared, take all of the chances you are offered. I had no support from my husband or my in-laws but still, I did it. I am here to help my students as Samantha helped me. Thank you so much for your help and support and I would like to thank Deesha for giving me this opportunity.”

Wahida, Deesha Tutor and former student

Students collected their awards in front of an audience of fellow students, friends and family. We also were also joined by special guest and Ambassador, Polly Toynbee. Polly handed out the certificates and some special awards for students who have shown dedication and excelled during the course.

Listening to our last two speakers, it brought a tear to my eye and a lump in my throat to think how much of a difference it can make. I think what you’ve all done and what you’ve achieved is fantastic. Congratulations to all the teachers and to all the students who have done so well to get your certificates.”

Polly Toynbee, Toynbee Hall Ambassador

Samantha Campbell, Deesha Programme Coordinator said:

Our adult language learners have persevered to learn a new language and they have forced many obstacles that have challenged them along the way.

We will keep pushing for more opportunities because we know that you can achieve your dreams, and because you are worth it. Life is about growing, and being in our programme gives each of you the opportunity to continue growing and to learn new skills that you will carry with you for the rest of your lives.”

This year, Deesha introduced Saturday classes for students who would otherwise be unable to develop and improve their skills due to work commitments. Deesha also intends to introduce new classes for the local community to give others with the opportunity to learn.

Click here if you would like to find out more about Deesha or know someone who may benefit from the course