Join the Journey: Support Refugee Youth
Education for a hopeful future: RSN’s mentoring programme enables young refugees to move forward in their education, grow in confidence and become better integrated in their local communities.
Ongoing project (since 2009) with no fixed end date.
Charity information: Refugee Support Network
For young refugees arriving in the UK, education is a priority: it’s how lives begin to be rebuilt and hope for the future is rekindled. Accessing, remaining and progressing in education, however, is rife with challenges. Having fled conflict, most experience further trauma or abuse on their journeys to the UK. They face additional issues upon arrival, including mental health, isolation, and communication difficulties as they navigate a a complicated asylum process in an unfamiliar language.
These young people often speak of education as one of the most positive things in their lives, a stabilising context for their present and equipping them for the future. We recruit, train and support volunteer mentors who meet each week with a young person in their local community to work towards particular educational goals. Through our educational mentoring programme, young refugees make progress in their education, grow in confidence and become more integrated in their local communities.
Improved education retention and progression rates
Activities» An hour a week of personalised educational support helps them keep up to speed with their classmates and achieve their personal educational goals.
Over 90% of young people in our mentoring programme will remain in education and 80% will identify their mentor as playing a key role in helping to achieve their educational goals.
Reduced social isolation and increased confidence
Activities» Knowing someone from their community is choosing to mentor them often leads to an increase in the young person’s confidence and a sense of welcome.
Over 80% of mentees will feel more confident and less socially isolated as a result of the mentoring relationship.
Improved community cohesion and cooperation
Activities» Mentees say their participation in local services increases through having a local mentor: joining local football clubs, drama, youth groups, etc.
Over half the mentees will have grown in their awareness of/participation in local services and activities as a result of the mentoring relationship.
Education has an incredible long term impact on the lives of young refugees including improved career options, independence and increased confidence, stability and a secure future. Our mentoring programme will enable over 140 young refugees each year to stay in education, and will also create positive change within communities. We will demonstrate these changes by tracking progress through biannual reviews of each mentoring pair, and through feedback from referral partners.
The “refugee crisis” increased public awareness and compassion, leading to increased numbers of potential volunteers and sources of financial support. However, a constantly changing policy scene and shifting public opinion could reverse this trend at any point and negatively influence our project’s success. We are dealing with these risks by diversifying our income streams, investing in our mentors and supporters to grow their connection to RSN and by promoting the positive impact of our work.
We will prepare an annual report that tracks the number of young people being mentored, whether mentees have reached their educational goals over a six-month period, and the quality and effectiveness of the mentoring relationships in improving young people’s lives in the areas outlined above.
Budget - Project Cost: £200,264Loading graph....
Amount Heading Description £29,696 Manager employment costs 4 days per week. Includes salary, national insurance and pension £13,920 North London employment costs 2.5 days per week.Includes salary, national insurance and pension £16,704 South London employment costs 3 days per week. Includes salary, national insurance and pension £16,704 East London employment costs 3 days per week. Includes salary, national insurance and pension £11,136 West London employment costs 2 days per week. Includes salary, national insurance and pension £16,704 Oxford employment costs 3 days per week. Includes salary, national insurance and pension £13,920 Birmingham employment costs 2.5 days per week. Includes salary, national insurance and pension £81,480 Programme delivery + core cost Desk rental; expenses; computer; travel; non-programmatic costs
Current Funding / Pledges
Source Amount BBC Children in Need £38,165 Guaranteed London Community Foundation £12,000 Guaranteed Arm Trust £10,000 Guaranteed London Catalyst £3,000 Guaranteed Croydon Relief in Need £8,563 Guaranteed Rothschild Foundation £16,504 Guaranteed Tudor Trust £5,130 Guaranteed
We launched our mentoring programme in London in 2009, and have consistently grown since then. We now work with young people and draw volunteers throughout the city and operate hubs in north, south, west and east London and Croydon. In response to increased demand and identified need from outside of London, in 2017 we are expanding this programme to reach young people in three new cities in the UK: Oxford, Birmingham and Manchester.
The people we help, aged 14-25, are all affected by conflict, displacement or crisis and seeking safety in the UK. A great majority arrived as unaccompanied asylum-seeking children, some of whom are also survivors of trafficking. Many have truncated or lack of previous education in countries of origin and disrupted education in the UK due to moving around as a ‘looked after’ child. Most face language difficulties, including many students with previous education and great potential to progress.
RSN’s track record demonstrates that we have developed an effective educational mentoring model. A department head told us: "I do not think this [educational progression] would have been possible without the support of their mentors".Our strong relationships with referral partners and community groups, alongside our team’s expertise, make us ideally placed to keep connecting with young people, recruiting and training mentors, and supporting mentoring relationships.
Read more about the Charity running this project.
Mentoring Programme Manager. RSN employee responsible for staff and volunteer recruitment, training and volunteer support for each mentoring hub.
S/W London Mentoring Coordinator. Role: matching mentors/mentees; developing, maintaining relationships with referral partners; leading training,
N London Mentoring Coordinator. Role: matching mentors/mentees; developing, maintaining relationships with referral partners; leading training,
Oxford Mentoring Coordinator. Role: matching mentors/mentees; developing, maintaining relationships with referral partners; leading training,