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Project information

Make It! Youth Project (11-13 year olds)

Make It! is expanding to reach all 18 secondary schools in Tower Hamlets by 2018. Make It! is a nine-month project, combining one-to-one mentoring, group work and a residential or activity trip, helping young people to develop their confidence and communication skills and improve their wellbeing.

October 2015 - June 2016

Charity information: Toynbee Hall

Toynbee Hall logo
  • Need


    49% of children in Tower Hamlets are living in poverty. This impacts on social and emotional wellbeing and academic achievement. The early teenage years are when wellbeing plummets and teenage wellbeing is a significant predictor of GCSE achievement, school engagement and problem behaviour. Make It! aims to ensure that these young people can make the most of their futures, emotionally and academically.

    We are fundraising to be able to reach every secondary school in Tower Hamlets.


    We partner students with a mentor to build up a positive adult relationship and receive social and academic support. These one-to-one sessions provide a safe space for an exploration of self-awareness, social relationships and school behaviour. We also host group working sessions framed around attachment theory. The young people are also be taken on activity trips (1-3 days) giving them the opportunity to meet peers from other schools and create a greater sense of belonging and community.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    Increase students’ self-awareness, confidence and communication skills.


    » Partnering students with a mentor to build up a positive adult relationship and receive social and emotional support.
    » Delivering group sessions which reinforce the learning from one-to-one mentoring sessions allowing young people to put their skills into practice.

    What success will look like

    Increased social and emotional wellbeing over the journey of intervention measured using an evidence-based Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire.

    Aim 2

    Improve school engagement, sense of belonging and connection with the community.


    » Activity trips bringing young people from different schools together breaking down the barriers between young people and creating a greater sense of

    What success will look like

    Improved school attendance and report card rates, positive coordinator, parents/carers, teachers, mentor and mentee feedback.

  • Impact


    We work with a number of schools on an ongoing basis and their commitment to the programme is reflective of its impact. Make It! helps young people develop core life skills which they can use and develop over the forthcoming years. The impact to date has shown improved academic results, behaviours and social skills – the foundations for future success, both personally and academically.


    Specific risks to the project are (a) a lack of funds to enable scaling-up in 2015-16, (b) a lack of volunteers, (c) schools referring young people with extreme behavioural issues.

    These risks are managed through (a) a robust fundraising strategy including diversifying our sources of income, (b) a volunteer recruitment process using multiple channels, and (c) working closely with referring teachers.


    Donors will receive regular updates via email, letter, telephone, in person (as appropriate).

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £115,545

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £93,114 Project management Includes: Specialist youth workers and trainers; Financial management; Monitoring and evaluation
      £12,065 Mentoring + Group Work Includes: 16 one-to-one mentoring sessions per mentee + 8 group work sessions
      £10,366 Activity projects Challenge Day + 3-day Community Project + 3-day Residential Trip

    Current Funding / Pledges

    Source Amount
    £1,500 subsidised contribution from schools £16,500 Conditional
  • Background


    Make It! operates within the London Borough of Tower Hamlets; an ethnically and racially diverse area and one with great disparity of wealth. As the home of Canary Wharf, Tower Hamlets boasts an average salary of £78,000/pa, yet the borough has highest rate of child poverty in the UK at a staggering rate of 49% and over 9,300 households living in severely overcrowded accommodation.


    Students are referred to us by teachers from our partner schools. They will be in Year 8 (12-13 year olds) and have been on free school meals during a period in the last six years or are “looked after” children. They show one or a combination of: persistent absenteeism causing underachievement or risk of exclusion; poor family support networks; social isolation; poor emotional or social skills; currently receiving social services intervention or just fall short of the threshold.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Toynbee Hall works on the frontline in the struggle against poverty. Based in the East End of London we give some of the UK’s most deprived communities a voice, providing free advice and support and working with them to tackle social injustice. We have over 20 years experience working with vulnerable young people in local schools, using methods of active learning and informal education to improve and support young people’s emotional and social wellbeing. Make It! is our flagship youth programme.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Curtis Worrell, Project Coordinator

    Curtis has over nine years experience in youth work, a degree in Informal Education, and is skilled at engaging hard to reach young people.


could pay for 16 weeks of one-to-one mentoring

"Stephen’s improved attendance at school is a direct result of Make it! and his mentor Anna."

Stephen's Teacher