Helpful info about Bridge Builders
1. What are the main aims of the Bridge Builders programme?
Bridge Builders exists to support children from disadvantaged backgrounds. Our aims are:
a) to reduce the attainment gap that exists between disadvantaged youngsters and their peers
b) to improve social mobility and employability
2. What geographical area do you cover?
We offer our mentoring services in England and Wales. Our partners are based nationally so we can usually find mentors wherever you are.
Our trainers and inspirational speakers can travel anywhere in the UK.
3. Do you charge for your services?
Yes, we charge for the costs associated with delivering our services, but we are a ‘not-for-profit’ organisation and so have kept our charges as low as possible and can sometimes offer a discount for larger groups. Please contact us to discuss.
Schools usually cover these fees through the Pupil Premium.
4. Does mentoring have to start at the beginning of a school year?
No, not at all. We can start a programme at any point during the year.
5. Do you mentor both boys and girls?
6. What do the mentees receive from the Bridge Builders Mentoring programme?
Our standard programme consists of 10 mentoring sessions of up to an hour, usually 2 per half term. Where possible, one of the mentoring sessions takes the form of a work experience visit to the mentor’s place of work.
Schools may choose to add in other elements e.g. our popular half day resilience training session
7. What topics do mentees cover in their mentoring sessions?
Our programme is not prescriptive. The focus of the programme is to support mentees to think about their future in the working world and to help them develop the skills, motivation and aspiration to prepare them for it. Our mentors are experienced middle and senior managers who will use their knowledge to identify the topics and areas they feel their mentees would benefit from session by session.
8. How old do mentees need to be?
We mentor boys and girls ages 10/11 (Year 6 Primary) and above.
9. Where does the mentoring take place?
The mentoring takes place at the mentee’s school or organisation. Please note that you will need to provide a private space for each session to take place.
10. Are your mentors DBS checked?
Yes, all our mentors are required to pass an Enhanced DBS check. They also undertake Safeguarding training
11. What support would my school or organisation need to provide for a mentoring programme?
In addition to a Project Sponsor, we ask you to appoint a Bridge Builders Coordinator, who will work with our own Coordinator to ensure the smooth day-to-day running of the programme in your school or organisation.
12. What is the lead time for setting up a Bridge Builders Mentoring programme?
Once you have decided to sign up to Bridge Builders, and provided details of mentee numbers, ages and genders, it typically takes 4-6 weeks to complete the recruitment and screening process.
This is followed by an Induction Day to launch the programme – organised by us but hosted at your location. The mentoring itself starts after this.