Mentoring is a widely recognised training and development tool for people of all ages and from all backgrounds. Traditionally, mentoring is defined as the long-term passing on of support, guidance and advice; a relationship in which a more experienced person uses their greater knowledge and understanding to support the development of a less experienced person. Mentors are committed to the needs of their mentee; the focus of mentoring sessions is always the mentee.
Our mentoring programmes take place typically, but not exclusively, within schools. School-based mentoring is a flexible, straightforward concept. Pupils benefit from the focused support and guidance of an additional adult in their lives, especially poignant for those from disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds, for whom one or both parents may be absent or unable to provide such assistance.
At Bridge Builders, we have excellent relationships with large organisations that include community work and volunteering as part of their corporate social responsibility. Volunteer mentors are recruited through these relationships, and are typically middle or senior managers who have a wealth of experience to offer young people. Our mentors are hand-picked for their enthusiasm, experience and commitment to making a difference to their mentees. Their role is to:
- Raise mentee awareness and aspirations
- Support the mentee to formulate positive goals, solve problems and develop and implement action plans
- Serve as a positive role model and advisor – sharing information, expertise and experience
- Build self-belief, motivation and resilience in the mentee
- Work in conjunction with the school to maximise the programme benefit to the mentee
The success of mentoring in schools is widely reported. A study in 2007 of school-based mentoring schemes tested the impact of mentoring relationships on the pupils involved. The results are very encouraging. By the end of their first year of mentoring, there were improvements in:
- Overall academic performance, including science and English
- Quality of class work
- Homework completion rates
- Confidence in academic ability
- Attendance levels
In 2011, the government funded Pupil Premium was introduced. This is an additional payment made to schools for each pupil entitled to Free School Meals, and is intended to help schools tackle the inequality that exists between pupils from disadvantaged socio-economic backgrounds and their peers. In 2017, the sum paid stands at £935 per child. We are already working with many schools who are using their Pupil Premium to fund their involvement in the Bridge Builders Mentoring Scheme.
If you are interested in registering your school, youth offender institute, prison, or other youth organisation on a Bridge Builders Mentoring Scheme, please click here for more information.
Bridge Builders can provide a diverse range of motivational speakers from a variety of backgrounds to give talks to young people. Our speakers are skilled in projecting powerful messages via their personal experiences and captivating personalities. Motivational speakers inspire students from all backgrounds to achieve their best and overcome the trickiest of obstacles.
Please complete our contact form for more details.
Delivered at your school or institution by experienced, highly qualified trainers, the Bridge Builders Mentoring skills workshops are designed to help young people who have to deal with the negative consequences of growing up at a disadvantage. The workshops give participants a chance to explore key issues in a non-threatening environment and develop new skills that they can use in their daily lives. Please note you do not have to be participating in the Bridge Builders Mentoring Scheme to take advantage of these workshops.
Social etiquette skills are a vitally important yet often underestimated set of skills that every young person should develop.
Good manners can mean the difference between success and failure in school, personal life and business relationships.
Our very popular Social Etiquette course enables students to recognise the difference between appropriate and inappropriate behaviour, learn how to deal with difficult people, discover the importance of simple manners and present themselves with the confidence they need to be successful in life. It also includes listening skills, body language and conversational skills.
Recent Government figures advised that 735,000 young people aged 16-24 were unemployed in January to March 2015. The unemployment rate for 16-24 year olds is 15.9% and is higher amongst young men than women. Competition for jobs is intense, and young people from disadvantaged backgrounds often find themselves missing out.
Our Employability course provides students with everything they need to know about making the right choices to become a successful, employable person. The course explores 12 practical steps to helping young people get their lives and careers back on track, including job hunting secrets, CV writing, interview skills and career management.
Anger is a normal, healthy emotion. It tells us “we need to take action to put something right”. However, out of control anger is a highly destructive force, leading to problems at school, work and home, and the degradation of personal relationships. Ultimately, unresolved anger can severely impair the quality of life for the affected person and all those around them.
Our Anger Management course aims to help young people who struggle with controlling their anger. By the end of it, they will understand more about their emotions and how to express them in a constructive – not destructive – way. This course will be beneficial to any young person who finds him or herself frequently involved in fights or arguments – whether inside or outside the home - who is prone to temper loss, or who is at risk of being (or has already been) in trouble with the law because of their temper.
Managing violence and aggression
The 2011-2012 Crime Survey for England and Wales shows that there were 2.1 million recorded violent incidents in that year, with many more likely to have gone unrecorded. Young people are surrounded by violence and aggression in their communities, in the media and even sometimes in their own homes. Successful management and understanding of violence and aggression is important for everyone.
Our Managing Violence and Aggression course will enable students to understand more about violent and abusive behaviour, and help them develop the skills to deal with it. The course explores a variety of techniques to de-escalate violent, aggressive and abusive behaviours, and helps students to develop the communication skills required to be successful. The course is recommended for any student from a disadvantaged background who is likely to face violence and aggression in his or her everyday life.
‘I am Resilient’
In 2014, an all-party parliamentary group produced a manifesto, outlining a series of policy recommendations to help schools build 'character and resilience' in their pupils. This would enable them to believe in themselves, understand the relationship between effort and reward, to be patient and to persevere in pursuit of their goals, remaining positive through adversity.
Our Resilience course will support the development of these important skills. It will help students to increase their confidence, to work hard for what they want and believe in, and to be diligent in their efforts to improve themselves. It will help them to keep on track towards their goals and not be afraid to ask for help when they need it.
We would be delighted to discuss your individual requirements and work with you to provide relevant, high quality courses to meet your needs. Skills workshops are designed to complement the mentoring programmes, however you do not have to be on a Bridge Builders Mentoring programme to take advantage of our bespoke courses and workshops.
Complete our contact form today for more information on bringing skills workshops to your school or youth organisation.
Compulsory work experience placements for school pupils were dropped in 2012, leaving a gap in the development of many children - particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds who are less likely to stay on into further and higher education. Therefore, these individuals may be applying for jobs at 17 and 18 without a day’s experience in a working environment. Wherever possible, Bridge Builders will build in a day of mentee work experience through our partner organisations, as part of our mentoring programme, however longer placements can also be separately arranged. Work experience for these mentees offers them an insight into the world of work and gives them a head start when they start to apply for real jobs – invaluable in today’s highly competitive job market.
Complete our contact form today to get involved.