Free4U Birkenhead re-opened earlier this month so if you have North Shore connections, please spread the word about this wonderful training resource that is available to anyone aged 16 and over (must be an NZ Citizen or NZ Permanent Resident).
Back in November last year, we had to temporarily close our Free4U community training centre in Birkenhead due to damage to the building, following a bus crashing into the storefront. Luckily no-one was hurt and many of our students were able to re-locate to our Henderson classroom.
Free4U provides the opportunity to develop computer skills, or to up-skill for a new job, further study or just personal interest. You can study in class or online, plus there is also our Henderson classroom. Go to our Unitec Free4U webpage for more info on courses, bookings and locations.
A special event and blessing were held on 2 May, the first day ‘back in business’, to acknowledge the work of everyone involved in the re-opening project. All our 2018 students were invited plus everyone who had made inquiries about our courses at Birkenhead. Ash Bennett, Free4U/ Community IT Learning Facilitator & Team Leader, says it was a great way to thank everyone involved and remind the wider community that we’re back!
Free4U student story - Neera Soni
A Free4U student, Neera Soni, has kindly shared her Free4U story below – from arriving in New Zealand to her first computer course – a great endorsement for the team! Neera, who’s in her fifties with two grown-up sons, says:
“In 2003, I arrived in this beautiful country having been a housewife for the majority of my life back in India. This meant that I had no experience here, and so I started working in supermarkets. Back in India, I had completed a Bachelor of Arts with Home Science but I didn’t have any computer knowledge, so I stayed in supermarkets for 13 years. After facing some health problems, I decided to move on from supermarkets and pursue my passion. I did a one-year florist course and have managed to get some great work experience over the last 2-3 years.
Last year I started a computer course in Birkenhead to gain some computer skills, in the hope that I could apply it somewhere or get a job in relation to this. This course has been amazing, it’s very close to my house and we are very lucky to have this course here in New Zealand. All staff are very helpful, no matter how many times you attend, how many questions you ask, they will come and help you out. I can use some of my new computing skills in my floristry work, doing orders and things, and also at home to do my administrative tasks.
Ash, Miguel and the rest of the team are there to help. They have lots of patience and they do the job very sincerely. I have great respect for the staff. Big thanks to all of them.”