BFAWU run ULR training course to develop existing reps

In the heady days before the lockdown the BFAWU delivered a course to a group of ULR’s from food producers across the North West and Yorkshire to help develop their skills and help them support adult learning in their workplaces.


The course was a ULR Stage 2 course aimed at existing reps and lasted a week and BFAWU Project Worker Carol Hillaby joined the union learning reps from Foxes Kirkham, Foxes Batley, Greencore and Manor Stoke.

Trade Union tutor Paul Gibson ran the training and was soon splitting the reps into groups to cover a wide range of issues such as Direct and Indirect Discrimination, Equality Law, Time Management and Interview Skills and Values – resulting in many in-depth discussions.

A large part of the training involved building up the reps skills and confidence to deliver a micro teach. These covered subjects such as ESOL and maths to making a “Chatter box” and discussing ways to “kill a Unicorn”.

The micro teaches were very popular and really did a fantastic job in making the group bound and support each other as well as learn skills to take back to their workplaces.

Carol said:

The course was fantastic, we learned so much but the way Paul teaches means we had fun too and we all jelled well. Paul moved us around the tables every day so we were in different groups and got to know everyone.”

If any one is thinking of attending a future course, please do, I so recommend it and if you are lucky enough to have Paul Gibson as your tutor you are on a winner, he is so nice and so knowledgeable.”

Carol wasn’t alone in her praise for the training and ULRs on the course felt that had taken a lot from it and were very keen to try out their new skills back in their workplaces.

Amanda Bailey from Manor Stoke said:

It was a really good week, I’m so glad we got on as well as we all did! Fab course, learned lots and the people on the course were like family.”

David Johnson, Foxes Batley, added:

It was simply the best course I have ever been on, got on with everyone & the way Paul delivered it was brilliant, made me want to get out there and do more for all the potential learners.”

Craig Pinnell, Foxes Kirkham said:

The course was fun, fantastic and educational, met the targets it set out to do. The teacher was brilliant and helped by students who were all willing to participate.”

Andrew Williams, Greencore said:

Brilliant group, it was good to see some familiar faces as well as some new ones. The group dynamics and participation with each other worked very well and it was refreshing to bounce new ideas of each other.”

Also from Greencore, Viorica Secrier summed up saying:  

I have enjoyed the group and the course. Very useful and helpful and all the colleagues were very skilled and friendly and I learned a lot from their experience. The group was wonderful. I would like to thank and the tutor because he could make us work as a team and we learned a lot of new things.”

Being a union learning rep can be a very rewarding role. If you are interested, you should first talk to your branch officers to find out more.

Unionlearn has also produced a new publication this year Promoting union learning” which is a helpful handbook for ULR’s and reps.