As part of his role as Alison CEO, Mike Feerick travels around the world promoting Alison’s goal of free universal education and encouraging projects, big and small, that share Alison’s ethos.
While the majority of our 21 million Learners engage with Alison independently as they empower themselves through self-learning, many organisations around the world use Alison as part of their own initiatives to promote accessible education.
While in the UAE last month, Mike came across another fantastic example of how Alison is helping organisations around the world make a real difference through free learning.
“One of the fun things I get to do as CEO of Alison is to travel the world meeting our learners wherever I go. Last month, I spoke at RewirEd 2021, an education conference in Dubai. After my talk, I was approached by Shadia Abdullah, the founder and Director of Rawafed Development & Learning Centre in Sharjah in the UAE.
Shadia told me that the Rawafed Centre has been using Alison for many years. The centre educates the children of migrant workers who come to the UAE who fall out of the education system. She and her team focus on teaching these young people basic literacy skills in Arabic and English, as well as basic mathematics. This gives them a chance of to rejoin the public schooling system or enter the workforce. Shadia said that Alison was useful in training the many teachers that she has working in the school – allowing them in turn teach English and Mathematics to their students.
Shadia said her teachers were delighted to hear that she had met me and so I asked her how far her school was from the conference. Long story short, Shadia and I visited the school the following morning at 8am before we returned to the conference. Visiting the centre was a real eye-opener. We often hear stories of migrant workers being exploited in the Middle East but we rarely hear about how local Arab people – equally dissatisfied with the situation – are trying in their own way to make things better through education.”
Teaching Teachers how to Teach
The Rawafed Centre in Sharjah is a fantastic example of how Alison is used by organisations not just to educate students, but to train teachers. Over the last year, Alison has greatly increased the resources available for the training of educators, through the creation of our Teaching Hub and the launch of the Alison Career Guide, which features career paths for a wide range of educational jobs, including: