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Providing support & information about Downs Syndrome in the Essex & North East London area


A First For Jack

Jack Bell is the first young person with Down’s Syndrome to achieve a BTEC in Public Services qualification within the whole Sea Cadet Corps.

He was supported by the educational charity CVQO , who adapted the research material, used for completing the written elements of the qualification, for his needs.

Jack has since achieved the BTEC diploma, worth the equivalent of 4 GCSEs, through his activities with the local sea cadets unit and CVQO.

CVQO provides the opportunity for members of the youth and voluntary sector to gain internationally recognised qualifications. The charity is accredited to deliver qualifications which have been selected to show the wide range of skills that young people, like Jack, and adults learn within their organisations, with the aim of providing them with opportunities in both the workplace and higher education.

Jack’s mum, Barbara, said, “We are all thrilled. Although Jack attends Columbus School and College, we never really expected that he would be able to gain formal qualifications. But this is learning in a very practical way that suits him and there’s lots of help available. None of this would have happened or even been possible without the support of Jack’s P.A.”

Jack has also completed his Duke of Edinburgh’s Bronze and Silver Award, and enjoys canoeing and football, keenly supporting Liverpool. He says, “Sea Cadets has been a big part of my life since I was 12 years old, and I have so many friends here. My Granddad helped in cadets and I know that he would be so proud of my achievement.”

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