An Cosán wins AONTAS Star Award!
An Cosán was named winner of the Social Inclusion category (large organisations) of the AONTAS Star Awards 2023 in recognition of our WorkAbility programme, which provides transferable skills for flexible employment.
The award was presented to our Adult Community Education Lead Adelaide Nic Chárthaigh and our Community Education Lead Debra Crawley at the AONTAS Star Awards ceremony, which took place in Croke Park on 10th March 2023.
Our CEO Heydi Foster, who was attending An Cosán’s International Women’s Day celebration at the time, said: “We are thrilled to win the Award in recognition of our ground-breaking WorkAbility programme, which promotes equity of opportunity and access to employment using a three-pronged approach that combines education, career coaching, and employment outreach.”
An Cosán has been delivering WorkAbility since 2019 with the aim of addressing issues of low education and high unemployment in underserviced and marginalised communities. Learners engage part-time where they live in a supportive learning community provided both face-to-face and online.
Heydi said: “A particular benefit to learners is the provision of wraparound supports, such as early years’ education and care, family support and counselling, digital skills enhancement, flexible part-time learning, mentoring, and an informal community-based setting.”
A 2022 an evaluation of WorkAbility found that it equipped learners with the foundational skills needed for employment and an improved sense of self-worth about their career, parental competence, and general psychological wellbeing.
Heydi said An Cosán was immensely grateful to its Level 5 Business Administration with Digital Skills learners and tutors whose input and feedback over the past couple of years have helped WorkAbility evolve into the programme it is today.