Project information

IntoUniversity North Kensington Primary FOCUS

IntoUniversity raises the aspirations and achievement of young people aged 7-18 living in disadvantaged communities close to our centres. Through educational, pastoral and motivational support we enable young people to develop employability skills, improve their self-esteem and achieve their goals.


Charity information


IntoUniversity logo
  • Need


    Children from disadvantaged backgrounds are 5 times more likely to fail academically than their peers. A 2009 Cabinet Office report found that young people from less well off homes are finding it more difficult than ever to gain access to Britain’s top jobs. Many of our primary students suffer from a lack of aspiration and low self-esteem and


    IntoUniversity's Primary FOCUS programme is an aspiration and awareness-building project for children aged 7-11. Many of our children think university is 'not for people like them so we show them the opportunities higher education brings and inspire them to achieve. The FOCUS scheme includes hands-on learning and university visits to inspire the children and sow the seeds of aspiration. We aim to increase our students' knowledge of their future options and get them excited about learning.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To introduce primary school students to university and help them see it as a realistic opportunity.


    » Run our 'What is a University?' workshop, introducing primary students to the world of Higher Education and addressing concerns.
    » Take primary students to visit university campuses and meet undergraduates.

    Our target is to see 400 students on our Primary FOCUS programme during the academic year 2011/2012 at our North Kensington centre.

    Aim 2

    Re-engage our students with learning and help them to get excited about it.


    » Run hands-on experiential learning workshops with our primary students.
    » Encourage them to see the purpose of study and the benefits of education.

    Success will be for students and their teachers to see an improvement in their behaviour and academic performance.

    Aim 3

    To increase motivation and strengthen aspiration of our primary students.


    » Reward and celebrate achievement.
    » Run workshops to support primary students through the transition to secondary school, identifying their learning style and positive attitude.

    Success will be measured through evaluation forms completed by the young people and improvements in the students' reaction to challenges monitored closely by IntoUniversity staff.

  • Impact


    The project will raise aspirations of young people in Years 3-6 and support them in thinking about their talents and future goals. We will develop long-term relationships with students and inspire them through positive relationships, hands-on workshops and university visits. The students will evaluate each workshop and we will track their progress. Success will be an increase in confidence and aspiration and more information about university and career options.


    There is a risk that one of our partner schools could pull out of the programme. We have worked closely with local primary schools since the charity began and we have developed strong relationships with the schools and with teachers to ensure that they are also committed to the aims of the programme and the benefits it will bring the young people.


    Donors to this project will receive a bi-annual update on the progress of the programme and an invitation to a centre for a tour and presentation of the young people's work as well as the opportunity to meet some of our young people.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £40,000

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      Amount Heading Description
      £25,000 Education Worker's Salary Designing and delivering programme
      £10,000 Centre Leader Managing programme and delivering with Education Workers
      £5,000 Materials Resources for preparing and delivering the programme
  • Background


    IntoUniversity North Kensington is based in the Notting Barns ward of Kensington and Chelsea. The borough is very diverse with a large disparity in wealth. There are pockets of deprivation where there are high levels of unemployment, fear of crime and poor health. North Kensington is home to people from many different communities, with black and minority ethnic population accounting for large proportions of the population. Parts of North Kensington are among the 5% most deprived in the country.


    Young people aged 7 - 11 living in close proximity of the centre. IntoUniversity targets young people who come under one or more of the following categories:
    • looked-after children
    • in receipt of free school meals
    • living in social housing
    The young people we work with are also typically from ethnic minority backgrounds underrepresented in Higher Education, speak English as an additional language and are first generation applicants to university.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    The IntoUniversity programme has run since 2002 and has existed as a registered charity since 2007. We have successfully developed the primary FOCUS programme for children in Years 3 to 6 by investing years in piloting and extending the scheme. We continue to use feedback from staff, students, volunteers and teachers to evolve and develop the programme and place the needs of our young people at the heart of what we do. Our impact evaluations attest to the transformational impact of our work.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Zoe Cox

    Zoe is our Director of Operations and a member of the Senior Management Team. With 10 years experience here, Zoe oversees all our delivery programmes.

    Emily Harle

    Emily co-ordinates our Primary FOCUS programme at North Kensington.

About IntoUniversity


will pay for 1 child on our programmes for a year

“One of the best things is that it raises aspirations- many of our children would be unaware of the careers paths available to them otherwise.”

Teacher on Primary FOCUS week