KRAN has been delivering an education programme for young asylum seekers for many years. It is the only programme of its kind in the United Kingdom. We have a proven track record of providing our young people with the skills they need to gain entry to college. Our projects are based in Canterbury and Folkestone.
The programme has been designed to meet the needs of young unaccompanied asylum seekers who have been living in the UK for less than two years. The needs of this group are diverse and complex. Some of the young people may have received an extensive education in their home countries whereas others may have received little tuition prior to arrival in the UK. Indeed, some may be illiterate in their first language. All of the young people will have encountered severe disruption to their normal routines and in addition, there will be significant cultural differences to experience upon arrival in the UK. As young people under the age of 18, all are in the care of social services. However, not all of the young people may be placed in foster care. The vast majority live in shared accommodation with other young asylum seekers. They are likely to receive a visit from their social worker no more than once every six weeks; hence the young people need to learn how to manage their lives in a new environment with minimal support.
The complex needs of the young people mean that a curriculum based solely on ESOL would be insufficient. The curriculum should encompass the skills and knowledge that will enable these young people to lead successful lives outside the classroom as well as within.
As this course may be the first experience of education that the young people receive in the UK, we believe that that this experience should be positive and supportive. The curriculum has been created to be relevant to their current needs and relevant to their potential requirements. It also necessitates a high adult-learner ratio in order to cater adequately for the diverse needs of the young people.
Lessons follow themes which are based on life skills such as ‘Safety’, ‘Health’ ‘Your Education and Future’, ‘Looking after yourself’ and ‘Your Community’. For example, the theme of ‘Health’ includes activities promoting an understanding of how to live a healthy lifestyle. For example, in a lesson on food hygiene, the young people learn about hygiene in the kitchen. They learn to read information about food on packaging, including the difference between sell-by and use-by dates. We also invite professionals in to teach the young people about sexual health or drugs and alcohol.
We also offer support to young people attending college and others who may require help to improve their employment opportunities. We work with learners on homework tasks and provide extra classes in English and Mathematics. We are lucky to work with an enthusiastic group of volunteers. Volunteers also support young people with their vocational courses such as plumbing and business studies.
If you are interested in learning more about our projects, please contact: