2023 Autumn Newsletter
A note from our CEO:
Ambassadors and InspireMe:
Year 9 students on our FutureMe programme have been enrolled onto our Ambassador Programme, where they will plan and deliver social action projects about a social issue they feel is important in their local community. Last week, all ambassadors came together online for our national annual InspireMe event. Ambassadors participated in activities to broaden their understanding of social action and get them thinking about their projects. We can’t wait to see how these develop next year!
Ambassadors chose to tackle social issues including racism, homelessness, mental health, knife crime, and humanitarian aid.
Refining our FutureMe programme:
We are thrilled to have been awarded a grant from City Bridge Foundation to refine and expand our work with young women on our FutureMe programme, to support them to secure employment and create brighter futures. The grant will allow us to support 100 young women (ages 15-18) in London through coaching, employability activities and peer mentoring.
Young women face issues in the labour market including discrimination, sexism and gender pay gaps. Research has shown that young women have been hit hardest by the impact of Covid: they are more likely than men to be NEET, to work in low-paid jobs and to have unpaid caring responsibilities. Girls living in poverty, disabled workers and those facing racial inequality in particular face structural barriers and higher unemployment rates.
Over 3 years, our new project will support women facing these issues. They will receive one-to-one coaching, helping young women develop post-16 employability action plans and gain skills and opportunities to achieve their goals. We will also provide gender-based group coaching and #employability activities involving female volunteers working in a wide range of industries.
We can’t wait to begin this project and see our FutureMe young women’s confidence, skills, and employment prospects grow and develop!
Our DFN-MoveForward programme:
In the summer term we announced that our DFN-MoveForward programme is coming to an end after an incredible five years.
We are immeasurably proud to have served and supported over 270 young people during the lifetime of the programme. We are committed to continuing to support young people with SEND to transition into employment and are working on plans for new programmes which will come to fruition in 2024. Please stay tuned for further information on this area of our work.
Our work to tackle school exclusion:
Our Future Leaders programme is also reaching the end of its pilot period. Over the past year, we supported 60 black male students in Year 10 and Year 11 to access coaching, work experience, work insight days and mentoring opportunities with black role models.
We will be continuing this area of our work in 2024 with young people who have been or are at risk of being excluded from mainstream education.
Again, please keep an eye on our e-newsletters and social media to hear more about our future plans.
We’re very excited that ThinkForward is growing! In 2024, we will be reaching even more young people, including expansion into new areas of London and the UK.
We are currently recruiting for four roles. If you are passionate about working for an organisation that improves the lives of young people who face challenges, to support them to achieve brighter futures, then please have a look at the jobs we are currently advertising here.
- Communications & Youth Participation Officer
- Database Administrator
- FutureMe Progression Coach – Nottingham
- SEND Employment & Progression Coach – Hounslow
Should you want to apply, then please
The Big Give Campaign:
We are thrilled to have exceeded our ambitious Big Give Campaign target of £60,000, raising a total of £60,317. This is an increase compared to the £40,000 we raised during the Big Give last year, and we are extremely grateful for all the extra support. These funds are vital for us to continue our work supporting young people to successfully transition from school into further education or employment. A huge thank you on behalf of everyone at ThinkForward to all who generously donated during this campaign, or shared our campaign with your networks, we really appreciate your support.