CWU learning centre event provides food for thought

bowls of food

I am on the diversity committee for Swindon Mail Centre and I was asked to help organise the event by the Mail Centre Manager Dan Williams, Phil Gee and HR Cheryl Shaw.

I thought it would be a good idea to incorporate learning into the week, as I run the Isambard Learning Centre in the Mail Centre. The theme of the week was foods from around the world and any interesting information or pictures that people would like to share regarding their culture.

I spoke to people that worked in the Mail Centre regarding the week; Sue Harkin, Poonam & Bush Sandhi, Evangeline Rodrigues, Mohamed Chaudhry and Steve Pritchard offered to help.

The week was very successful. The main day of the event was Thursday where 34 people brought in food to share. We had a lot of different foods from around the world. We labelled the food to let people know what country it came from and the name of the food. It was a really positive experience with lots of people taking part, this included cleaners, canteen staff, postal workers and office staff. This was really good as everyone mixed.

We had display boards up all week with information regarding different cultures. Some people come into the learning centre to research parts of their own culture and print off information to share during the week.

Throughout the week, Steve Pritchard (CWU Engineering Rep) organised a quiz where people had to identify different types of flags. We had 157 entries with the winner, Kieran King receiving a £50 gift voucher.

We decided that it would be a good idea to raise money for the Rowland Hill Fund, which provides financial help to Royal Mail colleagues facing hardship. The food that people brought in was free for people to share, but we had collection buckets on the table so people could donate if they wanted to.

We did well with this and raised £506.93 through the bucket collection and donations from South West No 7 Branch and Royal Mail.


Take a look at unionlearn's Setting up a Learning Centre guide here.

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Sandra Absalom

Sandra Absalom is a lead union learning rep (ULR) with the Communications Workers Union (CWU).