Mindhouse Productions, the makers of the award-winning radio series and podcast Grounded With Louis Theroux, is teaming up with BBC Radio 4 and our Tony Simpson to explore life in the British care system.
For Care Day 2022 the theme is “It takes a Village to Raise a Child,” and through our bespoke work placements, apprenticeships and mentoring opportunities, we wanted to showcase the wonderful talent of our care-experienced young people and how they flourish when they are in a supportive environment. Our partners and supporters are vital members of our village because they provide so many opportunities, offer their expertise and create a wider network of support for our care-experienced young people’s careers.
Read on to see how Kennington Film Studios approached us to create one such opportunity.
It’s National Apprenticeship Week 2022 and we’re sharing Joseph’s and Shazia’s experiences of their apprenticeships in Digital Marketing and Construction!
Apprenticeships are great opportunities for care-experienced young people because they provide real work experience and a chance to earn a qualification all whilst being paid!
“I chose to do an apprenticeship because it’s a great way to learn whilst actually doing the job. I get support from the Multiverse coaches who help me throughout the apprenticeship and I also get paid whilst learning. So, I thought it made sense to try out an apprenticeship because it’s a great alternative to university at this moment.” – Joseph
“Even though I still have to study, it’s a good opportunity and promises the career progression I need. I want to build my career to the level where I’m making a good living, being paid a good wage and I’m happy with where I am by 25. ” – Shazia
Despite the amazing opportunities apprenticeships can have for care-experienced young people, too many are still not accessible. With low pay our young people often have to sacrifice career progression for the sake of making ends meet!
Read more to see how you can help change this!
Shanelle gives us an insight into working at Wunderman Thompson – a global marketing agency that specialises in growing brands creatively, during her time there as a Strategy Intern!
Work experience not only allows the young people Drive Forward are supporting the chance to unlock their potential and explore their future careers but companies realise there’s a lot to gain by having enthusiastic talent on their side!
Introduced in 2015, our mentoring scheme has since developed into a comprehensive programme encompassing bespoke training for professional mentors, continuous support for both mentors and mentees, and additional professional development opportunities for care-experienced young people. What began as a small pilot with only a handful of participants, is now an integral part of the Drive Forward approach to enable care-experienced youth in London to achieve their full potential through sustainable and fulfilling employment.
We asked one of our very first participants, Sally, about the benefits that she has experienced from building and maintaining a trusted and consistent mentoring relationship.
Thinking back to your early 20s, did you know what you wanted to do with your life? For young people coming out of care, the years between their 18th and 25th birthday are pivotal. Before their local authority closes their case forever, these young people have to make sure that they are financially, emotionally, and practically stable. That means having a secure place to live, sufficient income, and a support network. However, actually making those decisions that will impact one’s life in the long-term is not an easy task.
“Young people who are in or about to leave local authority care are often vulnerable, isolated, more likely to suffer with mental health issues, and face bigger barriers when trying to find work. Helping a supporting a young man like Darnell who has had so many obstacles, and challenges in life and not always made the best decision for himself but is so positive, and determined to overcome them you just can’t help but admire and want help, and it has been a real privilege and pleasure. Young men like him are great examples to others, he has a great attitude and I hope the small opportunity we have given him will help him to go on a achieve his goals” Matthew Weatherby, Social Value Manger at Willmott Dixon Construction Ltd
I am number 4 of 5 children my mother had with my father. My father had 13 children in total of which I was number 9. My mother made the decision for me to come and live with family friends in England as a bid to give me a ‘better life’ based on my family circumstances at the time. I came to England in 2002 and I lived in South London with this family for almost 8 years. The first 4 years of living with them, I was not allowed out of the house and was not allowed traditional education but was merely acting as the family’s live-in au-pair. I endured countless amounts of physical, emotional and mental abuse whilst living with the family.
I had no friends and no family to confide in. As I got older, I could not take it anymore which led to me running away and reporting my situation to the police. The police introduced me to Merton social services who supported me for most of my early adult years from 2010 until I finished university in 2019.