European Learning Centre belongs to a growing network of (currently) four training centres in the rural area of the Cadiz Mountains in Southern Spain. Their chief areas of training are in language learning, ICT, and professional training to young professionals. Our region could be generally described as industrial (leather manufacturing, agriculture, mainly), geographically isolated, and with one of the highest levels of unemployment in Spain.
Two of the sister companies under the umbrella of ELC are Multimedia English Academy (based in Ubrique, Cadiz) and Welcome Institute (in Arcos de la Frontera, Cadiz), with over 23 years experience in the development and implementation of multi-media tools for learning. Their involvement in new curricular development, for example, has resulted in the production of a complete set of stimulating, materials to be used in English as Foreign Language instruction for young children and adults. These media include paper-based resources as well as other digital products based on video, audio, and other group games which are currently being used, and regularly tested and improved by a team of professionals in order to measure their efficiency and appropriateness. Our institutions work primarily with children, youngsters, but also with (young) adults in the local and regional community interested in furthering their education in a non-formal context. Public funding is received to subsidise the accreditation and certification of the training received. The organisation maintains a permanent number of staff between 25 and 30, plus a fluctuating number of outsourced freelancers and ad-hoc teachers. The annual student population averages 1000 students.
Additionally, ELC collaborates closely with all primary and secondary schools in our 2 towns, especially in participating and organising cultural events such as Peace Day, Local theater productions, and educational exchanges and international visits to European countries. Another important collaboration presently exists between ELC and a consortium of local authorities (Town Hall)- the Youth Information Office and the major Association of SMEs in our area. The main aim of this recently-created consortium is to improve the success in helping unemployed youth find a job and better spread the information available for youth and adults in our area.