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Impact and Outcomes

This is a county famous for its beauty and heritage, but it includes areas of high deprivation and rural isolation. For a young person affected by poverty, family breakdown, physical and mental health issues or other difficulties, this is not a beautiful place.

Young people are accepted for mentoring who are affected by multiple challenges at home. This can place them at a number of risks: disengagement from education; few positive role models; anti-social or criminal behaviour; social isolation; and poor physical or mental wellbeing.

Of the young people we matched last year

58%

Disengagement from education or risk of exclusion from school

30%

Signs of anti-social behaviour

28%

significant challenges with family or peers

30%

Significant challenges with family or peers

4%

were in or leaving care

Together, these factors place that young person at significant risk. Without support, they may go on to offend, to leave education or training, to harm or be harmed

Here’s what we helped young people achieve last year

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85% were observed to be or reported feeling safer

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88% reported improved confidence and self esteem

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85% were positively engaged in education, employment or training

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80% reported new community connections

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73% showed improved physical wellbeing & 73% improved emotional wellbeing

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70% reported higher aspirations for their future

Practitioners

The majority of our funds go directly to the practitioners who support young people and their mentors.

Each practitioner has a full caseload of matched pairs. They work with newly referred mentees to understand and meet their needs, and they support each young person’s exit plan at the end of mentoring.

Throughout the year, they keep closely involved in each mentoring partnership. They manage cases with more complex needs and multi-agency support, focused always on the interests of the young person. They organise activities and ensure young people can access them.

Mentors

We ask a lot of time and commitment of our volunteers. It’s right that we offer to contribute to their travel expenses, and provide a limited monthly budget for mentoring meetings. This ensures anyone can volunteer, including low-income and unwaged mentors.

The monthly allowance sets realistic expectations for entertainments or refreshments when mentors and mentees meet, and can be used by mentors to help young people plan and budget.

We also invest in group clinical supervision for our mentors, enabling them to offload concerns and gain confidence.

Activities

While not a significant cost, our activities for young people are invaluable. Group work helps young people build confidence and teamwork skills, and exposure to new places, skills and experiences is vital to raise aspirations.

In a county rich in cultural and recreational opportunities, we focus on helping young people make connections to world-class organisations and feel a sense of belonging to this heritage.

Activities have included: quad biking, rowing, gardening, photography, art, video-making, football, digital music, hip hop, spoken word poetry, farm visits, baking, filming, drama, panto, clay pigeon shooting, paintball, forest school, visits to country estates, kayaking, lantern making, assault courses, go-karting and more.