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Project information

The Lean on Me Programme

A one-to-one mentoring programme designed to empower young people to make positive choices and raise their aspirations. Young people are matched with a suitable mentor who will provide targeted emotional and practical support to meet agreed social, educational and employment focussed targets.

This is an on going project

Charity information: Future Skills Training

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  • Need


    Many disaffected young people lack positive role models who are able to empower and support them as they grow into adults. Combined with other adverse factors this can lead to little aspirations and low self-esteem, poor educational achievement, inadequate personal and social skills, a lack of meaningful and supportive relationships and therefore little hope of a future.


    Through a one-to-one mentoring programme, young people will be matched with a mentor who will meet with them regularly to build a trusting relationship enabling them to encourage, support and challenge the young people in areas most needed. As the relationship builds the young people will be encouraged to set targets for them to achieve both during the mentoring period and when this has finished. We intend to mentor between 10 and 20 young people per year.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    All mentees engage in positive activities


    » Meeting with mentor regularly to discuss concerns, hopes and any current issues impacting their lives.
    » Engaging in an activity together such as cooking, sport, art, photography, visiting a museum or place of interest or having a chat in a cafe.

    What success will look like

    Mentoring journals are completed following each session. Information recorded includes activities undertaken, achievements and concerns. This enables us to track progress.

    Aim 2

    All mentees increase their self-confidence and enthusiasm and feel more able to achieve


    » Mentors give mentees practical assistance such as helping with applications for further education or employment opportunities
    » Mentors give mentees encouragement and listen to them without judging them in any way.

    What success will look like

    Success is demonstrated through the levels of engagement of each individual. Feedback will be obtained from parents, carers and professionals involved in the young persons life

  • Impact


    Mentoring at risk primary aged children can stop them from being excluded and aid them with a successful transition into secondary school.

    Mentoring at risk secondary aged young people can help them to remain in school and re-engage positively with their education.

    Mentoring those that are NEET can help them to see the positive, to improve their social skills and work towards gaining employment or an education placement. It can give them the confidence to succeed in life.


    Some children and young people may be difficult to engage and may not want a mentor. The mentors use different tools and resources to engage mentees and breakdown those barriers, build relationships and tailor the sessions to the individual.


    Donors can sign up to our database to receive regular newsletters, alternatively we can provide more detailed reports upon request.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £27,300

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      Amount Heading Description
      £27,300 Mentoring for 10 young people £35 p/hour per mentee, normally a 2 hour session per week.
  • Background


    The project is based in Wandsworth in South West London. Wandsworth is a diverse borough with some great wealth but also areas which are among the 20 percent most deprived in England. These include Lower Layer Super Output Areas within the wards of Latchmere, Queenstown and Roehampton.


    Children and young people aged 8-18 that are struggling within a mainstream environment or those that have been excluded or are NEET.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Combined the team has over 25 years experience of working with disaffected and challenging young people. This has informed our belief that relationship is key to everything we do, and not just building positive, trusting relationships with the young people, but also with parents, carers and other professionals involved in a young persons life. This holistic approach is vital in empowering a young person to grow and develop positively leading to the best possible outcomes for them.

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Phil Thain

    Phil oversees the whole project and brings many years of experience managing staff, volunteers and supporting young people.

    Sarah Bray

    Supports the admin part of the project and mentors young people.