Optivo volunteer Keeley wins Social Impact Award!


14 September 2017

Optivo volunteer Keeley Nash has been named the regional winner of this year’s Festival of Learning Social Impact Award in the London and South East region.

She was handed the award for her exceptional achievements in adult learning and was presented with a framed certificate by Gordon Henderson MP (Sittingbourne and Sheppey) on Thursday 14 September.

The award celebrates people who have been proactive ambassadors for learning and have had an impact on communities and disadvantaged and excluded groups.

Keeley, from Sittingbourne, Kent, is a survivor of domestic violence and sexual abuse who is determined to use her experience and skills to support others with similar stories.

After enrolling on Families on our Doorstep’s community learning courses, she gained a new-found love for learning and began volunteering at Optivo.

Keeley decided to start a coffee morning to support women who have experienced domestic abuse. Trained as a Learning Champion, Keeley attends courses with learners too nervous to go alone and inspires others to start learning again.
She now holds community courses in partnership with Kent Adult Education and has recently completed training to become a facilitator for the Freedom Programme, supporting women affected by domestic abuse.

Keeley explains what winning this award means to her:


Keeley’s nominator, Emma Cummings, Senior Programme Coordinator from Optivo, said: “Keeley’s passion for helping others shines through and she is a fantastic example to other learners.”

Keeley added: “I never thought I would have the confidence to get to where I am today. I am now fulfilling my dream to help more families affected by domestic abuse. My mess has become my message.”

Stephen Evans, Chief Executive at Learning and Work Institute, said: “Keeley’s award recognises her special commitment to learning which not only changed her own life, but is now helping many others.”

Gordon Henderson MP (Sittingbourne and Sheppey) talks about Keeley's award and explains she's even inspired him: