This month we welcome UK charity Career Ready to our platform. They’re looking to connect with organisations who can provide mentors for school students at risk of not achieving their full potential on leaving school due to their socio-economic circumstances.
As part of our ‘collaboration with a difference’, Social Good Connect will mentor a student from Autumn 2021, and we’re already seeing businesses on our platform do the same. We spoke to Anne Wexelstein, Director of Career Ready Scotland.
UK-wide charity Career Ready provides young people with a structured programme that empowers them, boosts social capital and mobility and develops work skills, experiences, knowledge and confidence. Through long-term mentoring and Summer internships in organisations of every shape and size, they’ve connected over 150,000 teenagers with employers and volunteers from the world of work. Over 1,000 UK employers have helped, including 300+ in Scotland: DC Thomson, Broker Insights, Thorntons Law, Wood Group, Abrdn, Ceteris, Diageo and, as of now, Social Good Connect!
We saw the opportunity for a really interesting and beneficial partnership. Your team has the same energy, spirit and desire to connect people for a greater good as we do and I like the human touch that brings the volunteering opportunities listed on a digital platform to life. It’s all about relationships and your meaningful purpose chimed very strongly with us. And this is an exciting new way of meeting employers of all types who don’t know about us yet. Partnering with businesses, local authorities and schools, all of which you have on board, is key to our success in preparing young people for the world of work, especially those who are less upwardly mobile and don’t have access to the experiences and opportunities they need.
There’s such a range of offerings to satisfy people’s curiosities about how they can help others. It’s such a simple idea and there’s nothing else quite like it. There’s real value for us in making connections with businesses right across the country, including Dundee, where we’ve been operating for three years. Social Good Connect is a great way of connecting our go-getting Dundee regional manager Dawn to like-minded organisations who are up for unlocking young people’s potential through mentoring and an internship. And it was impressive that in the first week of our discussions you connected us to Broker Insights, who have since come on board offering mentors along with paid internships from several parts of their organisation!
We recognise that Social Good Connect is a significant connector for good, building bridges across the private, public and third sectors, so it’s a perfect match! This isn’t usually the way we work in terms of finding new employers to support students, but because the ‘people fit’ with your team was so close, it was absolutely the right thing to do! We have great working relationships with some of the Scottish businesses signed up to your platform, but there are others we don’t know and perhaps they don’t know us yet. We’re looking for more employers of all shapes, sizes and industries to help transform young people’s lives through the two-year mentoring and 4-week paid Summer internship programme. We want to connect with all sectors, so that there is an abundance of choice for Scotland’s young talent to get in and amongst.
We currently work with 137 schools across 18 Local Authority areas in Scotland and are aiming to grow to be able to support 1500 young people come Autumn 2021. We hope our partnership with you can help us with that. It’s so heartening to see students from sometimes challenging backgrounds blossom in confidence, capability and ambition as a result of the sustained relationship they form with local employers and their staff volunteers that mentor them.
Mentoring students from different socio-economic circumstances is a great way for employers to expand their talent pools. It connects them in new ways to the communities they serve in and recruit from and it can help them increase their diversity and inclusivity and gain access to young people they may never have found via the more traditional recruitment routes. It also gives their employees a valuable opportunity to develop themselves with their employer’s full support whilst transforming a young person’s prospects.
We know these are all strong areas of interest that employers who’ve signed up to Social Good Connect care about. We’re really looking forward to working together to increase our collective social impact!
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