We are thrilled to announce that we've expanded our educational mentoring programme to a second city outside of London: Birmingham.
Carolyn Burke, who coordinated our west London mentoring scheme and worked on our specialist education support programme, has come back from maternity leave and will now be coordinating our Birmingham hub. She says:
“I’m really pleased to be part of Refugee Support Network’s expansion to new areas in the UK. I wholeheartedly believe in the value and benefit of the educational mentoring programme and am really excited to see young people in the Birmingham area be supported by volunteer mentors. I’ve seen the difference an hour a week can make to a young person's educational outcomes, confidence and self worth, and can’t wait to start matching mentor and mentees and watching them flourish!”
Birmingham has a large and growing number of unaccompanied asylum-seeking children (UASC). In part, the steep increase in numbers is due to the National UASC Transfer Protocol introduced in July 2016, which Birmingham City Council predicts is set to increase the number of unaccompanied asylum-seeking children coming into the city to approximately 198 per year. We are keen to help these young people achieve their potential and build more hopeful futures through mentors supporting them in their education for one hour a week.
Charities supporting young refugees and asylum seekers in Birmingham have been tremendously supportive of Refugee Support Network setting up an educational mentoring hub in Birmingham. Louise Kinsella of The Children’s Society said:
“I really think this will be a fantastic service for the young people in Birmingham and will prove so valuable to them. Other than ensuring young people are enrolled in education there is little other meaningful work carried out with regard to education. The mentoring programme sounds like a brilliant way of helping young people to develop and to identify their own educational goals – education is so important to the young people that we work with and it will be wonderful for them to receive some focused support in this area.”
We’re very excited to be partnering with some fantastic organisations that are already doing great work supporting young people in and around Birmingham, and are delighted to be able to provide the much-needed service of supporting them in their education.
To register your interest in becoming an educational mentor in the Birmingham area, click here.