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Thousands to benefit from new courses at Hampshire’s libraries

Thousands of residents will be helped to find a job or learn new skills thanks to free and discounted courses at Hampshire County Council’s libraries.

The Library Service has been awarded over £300,000 by Hampshire Futures to support 3,500 adults across the county, as part of a wider £1.35 million programme. This will include courses for targeted groups to improve their English, maths, digital and employability skills. A number of leisure courses are also on offer for people to gain new skills and interests.

Councillor Andrew Gibson, Executive Member for Culture, Recreation and Countryside, said: “Local libraries are at the heart of any community and are excellent venues for learning. These include courses which will make a difference to targeted groups, such as those seeking work, those who may have a disability or learning difficulty and who need that extra support to thrive in education, training and employment. There are also a great variety of leisure courses for residents to try new activities such as learning a new language or joining a friendship group to help reduce social isolation.”

The courses include:

  • Employment courses including CV writing, interview skills, money management and confidence building. These courses are aimed at adults aged 19 or over who are receiving employment benefits, including those with learning difficulties and/or disabilities, and are free of charge to eligible learners. These courses are available at Aldershot, Eastleigh, Farnborough, Fleet, Havant, Gosport, Hythe, Lymington, Petersfield and Waterlooville libraries.

  • Family learning courses including English, maths and digital skills, lip-reading and friendship groups. These courses target people who receive Income Support or Universal Credit and/or have a learning difficulty and/or disability, and are free to eligible learners. These courses are available at Aldershot, Basingstoke, Bridgemary, Eastleigh, Fareham, Farnborough, Fleet, Gosport, Hythe and New Milton libraries.

  • Leisure learning courses to give people of different ages and backgrounds the opportunity to gain new skills, follow an interest, and progress to formal courses. These courses include drawing and painting, dance and wiggle, yoga, meditation and Spanish for beginners. They are open to all and will be discounted or full price courses. They are available at Aldershot, Chandler’s Ford, Fareham, Farnborough, Gosport, Waterlooville and Winchester libraries.

The courses will meet local needs and change during the year to meet demand. They also reinforce the Library Service’s five strategic aims to support and encourage reading and literacy, improve digital services and inclusion, contribute to the health and wellbeing of local communities, provide access to trusted sources of information and facilitate and provide learning.

Details on individual courses can be found at

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