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    About the partnership

    The Mybe Awards partnership with Ufi VocTech is part of an impact initiative to catalyse change across the UK so that significant scale can be achieved in digital vocational learning with adults. 

    Mybe Awards are a vocational training provider who work predominantly with underserved communities deploying innovative methods in niche ways, not typically found in mainstream learning and skills.

    Ufi VocTech Trust is a significant grant-funding body (following the sale of Learndirect in 2010) with a focus on delivering an increase in the scale of adult vocational learning and skills, primarily through digital technology.

    What brought Mybe to work with Ufi was their interest in the work we were developing on an avatar-based learning system combined with bespoke learning programmes and learner-generated content.

    What is the avatar learner journey©?

    If you are one of those people with learning support needs; feeling underserved and effectively penalised for not fitting easily into mainstream learning, we have worked very hard to produce a learner-led solution for you.

    The novel avatar learner journey© was developed by learners for learners incorporating individual support arrangement to enable every learner to develop an achievable learning plan leading to a brighter future.

    The avatar method also cancels out the need to repeat their stories multiple times to learning providers, increasing motivation to learn and the capacity to achieve.

    Why use the avatar learner journey©?

    The digital avatar-based learning interface enables underserved learner communities to go on to the platform and select a learner that is representative of themselves, and their particular circumstances. As the avatars on the platform have been developed from thousands of previous learners it adds a ‘lived experience’ component that resonates with an underserved learner. You can reflect on avatar experiences that they’ve been through in the past and pull out different experiences and expertise that they’ve developed through those experiences.

    Where can I find the avatar learner journey©?

    You will be able to access the avatar learner journey© on your mobile phone, tablet or computer 24/7 or in most public libraries or community centres soon. You can register your interest via the sign up form to be the first to hear when the platform is launching. 

    You can also call our avatar Freephone helpline on 0191 207177 if you don’t have access to the internet and want to find out more.

    When can I get onto my avatar learner journey©?

    The avatar learner journey is coming soon and will be accessible 24/7 at your pace. You can select a lived experience you can connect with providing you with a learner support framework that will be personally tailored to your circumstances.

    Why wait?

    If you are still not sure, contact us via email to access more information to help you make up your mind. You can work through the consequences of not taking this opportunity to progress to a brighter future. In our experience, more information will do the trick.

    How can I get started on the avatar journey©?

    Go to the platform, look through the groups we have helped and select a group with the circumstances you want to connect with. This will take you to an avatar that has a lived experience you may identify with. (If you prefer, you can go direct to an avatar).

    Select your avatar and follow the guide. You will be able to dial up or down the intensity of your learner support needs which the avatar will convert to a plan to manage your support needs at the level necessary to ensure you achieve your learning goals.

    Your avatar will help you to identify prior skills and experience that may well support you in achieving your learning goals and help you define your prior experience, skills, behaviours and interests that have occupational value. This prior learning will be used by your avatar to point you in the direction of learning opportunities that potentially have a personal match with you and a brighter future.

    You can at any point in your avatar promoted learner journey access ACE your personalised learning mentor. ACE will help you shape your learning objectives representing the steps you will take on your learner journey to a course of learning leading you to your brighter future.

    You now have a plan that includes the learning support you will need to action and a choice of learning and development programmes that will shape your new mind-set focus your aspirations and enrol you on a pathway of achievement and to a brighter future.

    At this point your virtual mentor ACE is replaced with a real learning mentor to support you throughout your journey. This will ensure you will never be alone, be continuously stimulated, supported and empowered to effectively transform your previous experience as an underserved learner into a person with expertise and a brighter future.

    *ACE is your personalised virtual peer mentor to help to complete your learning plan


    Had a troubled upbringing? Your parents had problems that impacted on you? You may have had a period in care, foster care or other institution and experienced separation from your brothers and sisters?

    Maybe you were bunking off school and/or running away from foster homes, never settling down.

    Maybe used drugs or did some running for some older boys; maybe got paid in drugs, eventually getting hooked on stuff.

    Maybe got into crime to obtain goods you could sell on to pay for drugs.

    Maybe been in prison more than once; may have an experience of homeless on release.

    Got relationship difficulties with your girlfriend or partner? Got children but caught up with problems of being inside jail or partner problems. 

    You don’t think you have a chance in the job market, maybe not good at writing things down or can’t concentrate well or have some form of learning difficulty?

    Maybe have disabilities such as, emotional, social or physical which you feel have held you back.

    You may consider that you have learnt stuff in different ways sometimes in a custodial or institutional setting or even through some of the activities you have carried out in your lived experience?

    Maybe the areas you have lived in do not offer much in the way of getting employment or other opportunities?

    You might feel that some of the professionals you have had dealings with have let you down, overlooked you; were not there when you needed them or maybe they just got it wrong?

    Read more about Jason.


    Maybe you moved around areas when growing up and found it difficult to settle in.

    Maybe you got stick for how you looked or having a disability.

    Maybe your early life at home was difficult caused by parental and other adults having lots of problems? I lived with my Mum and Step-Dad and 2 younger brothers.  Maybe your family was full of secrets or frustrations?

    Parents had a rocky relationship: they didn’t get on, drank heavily or took drugs or both and it rubbed off on you and your brothers and sisters.

    You got hassle through most of your schooling. Didn’t get on with teachers or other kids?

    It may have been a rough school in a rough area?

    Maybe got into trouble a lot for fighting; your response to name calling?

    Bunked off school occasionally.

    Maybe also dropped out of college or training after school?

    Maybe took up low level employment where you could get it to make ends meet.

    Maybe you had a significant disability that needed hospitalisation over a long period?

    Maybe had to take painkillers most of the time. 

    Maybe got stuck claiming disability and invalidity benefit or doing dead end jobs and not using your skills at all.

    Maybe had a partner with difficulties as well that could have brought you both together. Maybe got children and both taking drugs to get by?

    Maybe partner relationship is or has become problematical, possibly violent?

    Maybe split from partner?

    Possibly travelling around, with no real roots.

    Possibly got into crime or scams to help financially, maybe got caught and served time or on supervision?


    Are you like Debbie, growing up in a disrupted family atmosphere, with an aggressive father violent towards her and her mother, both parents’ heavy drinkers and continuing a disrupted way of life in education? Maybe had a spell in care leaving you with bad dreams about that experience.

    Hating being in at home, Mum always drinking and Dad hitting us – not knowing what to do about it. Maybe have asthma only needing to use an inhaler if your Dad upsets us.

    Maybe you too had a spell in care for being out of control or because of parental neglect?

    Maybe like Debbie you were known in school for being disruptive in class and being expelled for using drugs during school time. Being seen as a nuisance and a pain to deal with so using tactics like being unwell to be sent to the rest room to avoid lessons?

    Maybe you felt like you would rather be out with mates, often older than you to catch up with what’s going on that you might have missed?

    Like Debbie, fixated on your looks sometimes going shoplifting for makeup, sports gear and that kind of stuff that everyone wants, with friends who have done bigger stuff than that?  

    Smoking and stuff like the older girls who share with you and egg you on to do more things. Getting trolleyed on weekends if you can, maybe every night, and trying to get in clubs and bars bluffing your way in; spin them a line. Those guys on the doors don’t care, they mostly like to chat you up and hassle the lads.  Maybe you try to keep safe when going out, keeping enough for a share of a taxi to avoid walking home around where you live as it’s too risky.

    Maybe you used to like sports of one kind or another but finding it boring now even though you were good at something before giving it up?

    Maybe you like piercings and getting your tongue and/or navel pierced together with your friends?

    Like Debbie, maybe you do have some interests but find it difficult to keep up with them. Like Debbie spending loads of time reading all the mags, browsing the internet about piercing so really knowing everything about it.

    Maybe like Debbie, you like art and design best and usually go to those classes, even helping someone with a small jewellery markets stall.

    Maybe you found a Saturday job for a bit more money, doing your best but being treated like a skivvy.

    Maybe you could do design and stuff and try college but are afraid girls might laugh at you.

    Not really wanting to talk about where you live because of the reputation it has for all the troubles and drugs and stuff. Maybe you’d like to get away but don’t know where you could go really.

    Are you already thinking about trying to move away from home to live with a friend but feeling your caught in a trap?