Cour­ses help Nepalese women

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Front Page -

CLASSES to help Nepalese women set­tle in Bri­tain are ex­pand­ing through east Kent. The tu­ition, orig­i­nally for English lan­guage and cul­ture, now in­cludes em­ploy­ment skills in a three-year pro­gramme. The aim os to help about 600 women in Ash­ford, Shep­way, Dover and Can­ter­bury over that pe­riod, most of them the wives of Gurkhas. The ser­vice was in­au­gu­rated at a cer­e­mony in Ash­ford on April 24, at­tended by Damian Green, Ash­ford Con­ser­va­tive par­lia­men­tary can­di­date, with classes be­gin­ning in the town the same day. The tu­ition is un­der way in Shep­way and will be ex­tended to cover Dover and Can­ter­bury this year. Or­gan­iser Ju­lia Hanks, of the School of English Stud­ies in Folke­stone, said: “A lot of these women don’t speak English. “It can be very iso­lat­ing for them and many will be here for the rest of their lives. “A lot of them also have low paid jobs with unso­cial hours so this will im­prove their job prospects.” Classes had started in Jan­uary at In­ter­na­tional House in Sta­tion Road, Ash­ford and will now be ab­sorbed into the new ser­vice, at Brook­field Road Bap­tist Church in South Ash­ford, and ad­di­tion­ally cover Bri­tish cit­i­zen­ship and cus­toms. They will also teach com­puter and em­ploy­ment skills and pro­vide ca­reers ad­vice and help in im­prov­ing job prospects. Ash­ford’s Nepalese com­mu­nity con­sists of about 400 fam­i­lies while those in Shep­way, to­tal about 560 fam­i­lies.

In the group are Ash­ford par­lia­men­tary can­di­date Damian Green and Julie Hanks of the School of English Stud­ies

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