Welcome to the August Newsletter.
The National Office has been working hard to complete the work for the conference, coming up very soon. I am looking forward to meeting many of you there.
We have had a good response from MPs who have all received a copy of the report Learning Not Lonely (Living Life, Expanding Horizons and Challenging Conventions). The great enjoyment that members have from learning together, being together and sharing their skills and the huge difference that they make to local communities is being recognised.
We are now spending some time looking at what materials local U3As use in the interest groups and how we can provide and share material that is of interest to them. We will be guided by Subject Advisers, Shared Learning Co-ordinators, Research Ambassadors and of course local U3As in what they feel is useful.
In this issue…
News on Volunteers
Hearing Access protocol
U3A in the press
News from the Trust
Shaping our tomorrow
A small number of places remain available at this year’s national conference – book online at conference.u3a.org.uk as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.
There are a range of workshops on offer, the chance to meet and share ideas with colleagues from U3As around the country, and of courses the all-important AGM.
If you cannot make it to the AGM this year, be sure to tune in to the live video stream. We will be broadcasting from approximately 09.00 on our YouTube channel and at conference.u3a.org.uk/agm.
National programme of workshops
The Third Age Trust national workshop programme for U3A members and committee members is proving extremely popular and there are a number planned around the country.
The workshops have been designed to provide support, information and knowledge to the U3A movement.
Please visit the events tab of the website: https://workshops.u3a.org.uk/ for further information and details of how to request a workshop or to book on to an existing one.
News on volunteers
Trust Volunteers continue to make a hugely significant contribution across the U3A movement.
This includes a group of Volunteer Trainers who are working with Research Ambassadors and Subject Advisers to develop a workshop on presentation skills. This will be rolled out to also to any interested U3A group leaders as a second stage. Trust volunteers will also be centre stage in supporting signposting and registration at this year’s conference.
There are several regions where more volunteers would be welcome so if you would like to get involved or find out more about the roles please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Research and News
Read the latest news on Shared Learning projects and research such as Cottonopolis and the Philatelic Society, published next week at sources.u3a.org.uk
Hearing access protocol
Members of Forth Valley U3A and Callander U3A have played a key part in the launch of a new Hearing Access Protocol that aims to make meetings and events less stressful and frustrating for people with hearing loss.
To read more on this and the latest news please go to u3a.org.uk
National summer school
A successful National Summer School has taken place at Harper Adams University in Shropshire. Members taking part from U3A’s across the country. Cryptic Crosswords, Garden History, Mathematics just some of the courses offered. The next Summer School takes place in Cirencester in September. See more on our social media pages at https://www.facebook.com/u3auk/
Other national events
Places are now booking for three exciting new national U3A events in October taking place around the country.
At the Whitworth Gallery, Manchester members will get an in depth look at one of the largest global collections of textiles and wallpapers dating from the 1st century AD to the present day.
· Unravelling the Whitworth’s Collections
· The National Museum Cardiff with a Performance from the Welsh National Opera
Exploring the Solar System at the Royal Institution
Chairman of U3A Plus, Hilary Jones, writes: “At the recent national Summer School in Shropshire, it was good to see U3A members with mobility issues or impairments feeling enabled to enjoy the wide range of learning opportunities on offer. All members took a full part in the courses from Play Ukulele to Garden History.
The organising team were ever present and willing to try and sort out any problem. Members were given any assistance requested, accessible rooms, help at mealtimes, lifts to seminar rooms and help with luggage.
I was delighted to see first-hand, that U3A learning is accessible to all.
You can learn more about U3A Plus and access the information and learning at https://plus.u3a.org.uk/
News from the subject advisers
The latest updates and news from the national subject advisers are now available on the Subject Advice section on the website.
· Jazz appreciation
· Living history
· Mah jong
· Play reading
The Trust wishes to thank Margaret Tomlinson and Geoff Preshner who are stepping down after many years supporting U3As as subject advisers.
News from the Board
Chairman of the Third Age Trust, Pam Jones said:
“The very hectic NEC year has come to a close and there will be some changes to the Board from September. This year the ‘object’ clause was changed, the Trust constitution updated, we had to formulate policies on Safeguarding of vulnerable adults, Diversity, Equality and that GDPR, which is still something of a mystery to some. Hopefully, the next year will mean less work for everyone but don’t relax just yet!
Those of us retiring will miss the camaraderie of the NEC. Serving on there can be frustrating and at the same time rewarding and we will miss it. We send our love and Very Best Wishes to all those who follow us. We will be watching from the sidelines!”
U3A in the press
The U3A movement has been featured in this month’s edition of the newspaper The Mature Times.
You can read the article at https://www.maturetimes.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/MT_AUG18_APP.pdf
Kathleen O’Donnell (Paisley U3A) has featured in a film for the Scottish Opera Pagliacci Community Chorus. You can watch here at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TfDKMHgwj10
David, Rochester U3A
“I was a police officer and I then changed career and taught horticulture to teenage children with special needs for 14 years. So It was so funny to be back at Harper Adams Agricultural University for this year’s national summer school.
“I joined U3A about 5 years ago because friend recommended it and I go three times a month to my Ukulele group. It’s very friendly – everyone supports everyone else and we learn. In fact I learn something new every time I go. We have fun all the time but there is some serious learning going on – I have learnt some difficult chords for example but you are encouraged and you practice until you get it.
“I am disabled and I find everyone at U3A has always helped and supported me. When you think what you get for just £12 a year – it is really fantastic – I get learning, friendship and support. Now I am trying to persuade my neighbour to join
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