Ex-Syrian Midwife Who Now Studies in Rhyl Shortlisted for National Award

A Coleg Llandrillo student who was a midwife in Syria for several years before having to relocate to the UK with her family, has been shortlisted for a national award.

Amal Alkhatib, who lives in Rhyl and has been studying on a range of ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) courses at Rhyl College over the past five years, is in the running for Chwarae Teg’s ‘Womenspire Award 2021’.

Amal left school at 18 to study nursing and eventually became a qualified midwife. She worked in Syria’s capital Damascus for seven years before having to move her family to Lebanon. After having to relocate again whilst she was in Lebanon - five times in five years - Amal came to the UK as a refugee.

When she arrived in the UK she spoke no English whatsoever. So after settling in Rhyl she enrolled on several courses at the town’s college.

Her ESOL tutor Llinos Blackwell nominated her for the award, stating that Amal has “truly excelled in her learning”. Amal recently obtained a place on a Health and Social Care course, as her goal is to return to her original passion, midwifery.

Llinos said: “I nominated Amal for the award because I wanted her positivity, dedication and willingness to support others to be recognised. She is a truly inspirational woman.”

A spokesperson from Chwarae Teg said: “For the sixth year in a row, we’ve been in awe of the incredible women nominated for our Womenspire Awards. Chwarae Teg staff on the judging panel have been moved by the stories from our shortlisted nominations and we’re excited to bring you the 2021 finalists, whittled down from hundreds of entries from across Wales.”

Womenspire recognises women’s achievements in every aspect of life: from personal achievements to outstanding contributions. Chwarae Teg Womenspire Awards showcase the remarkable accomplishments of women across Wales and will inspire future generations.

Chwarae Teg is the charity inspiring, leading and delivering gender equality in Wales. Since 1992, it has been working to ensure that women in Wales can enter the workplace, develop their skills and build rewarding careers.

For more information on English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) courses, or any other courses at Coleg Llandrillo’s Rhyl campus, telephone 01745 354 797, email: enquiries.rhyl@gllm.ac.uk or got to www.gllm.ac.uk