Nominate an adult learning project for an AONTAS STAR Award

AONTAS is currently inviting nominations for the STAR Awards Initiative for adult learning projects.  The STAR Awards Initiative, now in its fifth year, recognises the value of adult and community education throughout the country.

Last year’s winners included the Skillsnets/Craft Butchers National Certificate in Butchering Skills,  ‘A Song for All’ (Traveller Musical Education Project in Co. Carlow), and the Downtown Centre, which aims to improve greater access at third level for adults living in Limerick.  439 projects have been nominated for awards over the past four years, increasing from 46 in the first year to 110 last year. 

This year the STAR Awards will recognise the role of adult education in helping people cope with the consequences of recession – by offering opportunities for learning and skills development, but also recognising the social dimension of unemployment.  The purpose of the learning involved in nominated projects can be personal fulfilment, social change, active citizenship, environmental sustainability, cultural and intercultural awareness and knowledge, skills development, personal development, human rights education, community development, community regeneration, health and well-being and employment in related fields.  More details on the categories are available from

Nominated projects should demonstrate the following criteria:

  • A high level of collaboration and partnership amongst participant groups
  • A learner-centred approach to education provision
  • Adult education practice and methodologies
  • Clear evidence or outcomes

 AONTAS has established a panel of fifteen judges with a variety of experience with adult and community education, who will review the nominations and decide on fourteen different winners.  The award winners will be announced at a special ceremony on February 21st at Dublin Castle. Nominations can be submitted directly through the website or sent to AONTAS.  The closing date for nominations is Friday November 26th.

Full details on how to nominate a project for an award, along with a sample completed nomination form are available from or contact AONTAS directly on 01 406 8220. Nominations are welcome from projects themselves or from people directly involved in the project they are nominating.  Projects nominated in previous years are also eligible for nomination again.

The ceremony marks the official opening of the Adult Learners' Festival 2010 - a weeklong event which will highlight the benefits of adult learning.