Derry City & Strabane - Virtual Learning Festival to begin this Wednesday




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Virtual Learning Festival to begin this Wednesday

26 June 2020
Derry and Strabane Learning City region will host the first ever Virtual Learning City Festival this Wednesday, July 1st, and Thursday, July 2nd.
The event is funded by Council, North West Regional College and Ulster University, and will see a series of online learning experiences and activities take place in the form of information sessions, live presentations, short films and live chats.
Key areas which the Virtual Festival will explore are J​obs & Skills, Health & Well-Being, Arts & Culture and Technology & Science.
To mark the Derry City and Strabane region recently achieving the UNESCO Learning City status, Council and its partners had planned a Learning Festival in May, but due to Covid-19 restrictions, they are now hosting the world's first Virtual Learning City Festival.
North West Regional College and Ulster University will host a programme of varying events, while the Nerve Centre, U3A and the North West Japanese Culture Group are just some of the other organisations also taking part.
Mayor of Derry City and Strabane District Council, Councillor Brian Tierney, will officially launch the festival on Wednesday morning at the Virtual Learning Webinar –Learning in Lockdown – Learning Cities Sharing, and he has encouraged everyone to get involved.
"Although, this wasn't our original plan for the Learning Festival we still wanted to host an event that could provide learning opportunities for everyone.  Thanks to some innovative thinking and hard work, the team has managed to put together a fantastic programme", he said.
"Whether it's robotics, cooking, origami, animation, sport, advice on gaining employment or so much more – there is such a wide range of topics and content available that you're guaranteed to find something that will spark your interest.
"I would like to thank Council's partners – North West Regional College and Ulster University – for their contributions, and a big thank you to all those taking part and sharing their wisdom.
"I would also like to extend a warm welcome to those from other Learning Cities who will be joining us over the two days.
"I wish everyone well ahead of what promises to be a great two days of education and enjoyment."
 Leo Murphy, Principal and Chief Executive of North West Regional College, said:
"Teaching and Learning has been continuing at NWRC, and partnering with the first ever Virtual Learning City Festival is an extension of our commitment to support the career ambitions of everyone across the region.
"This is a great community learning initiative. I'd like to thank our staff, and all of the groups who have made a contribution to what I'm sure will be an extremely successful festival where possible online."
Padraig Canavan, Chair of the Learning Cities Programme, said:
"It's always a good time to learn a new skill or to educate ourselves on something we have never explored, and the Virtual Learning Festival offers every single person in our district and beyond the opportunity to do that.  We welcome all to link, like and learn! Be part of it – Derry's Learning City Festival, July 1st & 2nd, coming to a screen next to you!!" 
For more information and to view the festival programme, visit or email
Make sure to follow What's On Derry Strabane on social media for regular festival updates.   
If you would like to participate in the festival but require digital assistance, please contact Libraries NI on 02890395989 and give a description of your query and library staff will return your call within 48 hours.