By Laurena Robinson, Director of Fundraising and Partnerships at Founders4Schools.
Today is ‘Giving Tuesday’, a global initiative which, on the back of the indulgence of Black Friday, reminds us all of the opportunity to 'give back’ to those who are most suffering at the hands of a very difficult year. It seemed fitting, therefore, that we earmarked this day to launch our covid-response appeal, Futures4Students.
Founders4Schools was set up to help educators prepare young people aged 6-24 to gain insight into the evolving careers that are and will be available to them. To help guide subject choices relevant to particular sectors, to help close the gender gap in particular industries, and to ensure the economy can rely on the emerging talent and skill sets much needed by our future workforce.
Evidence confirms students who experience 4 encounters with role models are 5 times less likely to become NEET (not in education, employment, or training). To date, F4S has reached almost 397,000 students across the UK - enough to fill Wembley Stadium 4 times over.
However, with youth unemployment figures set to exceed 1 million by the end of the year, our need to reach all students has never been more critical.
For millions of young lives across the UK right now, the pandemic is causing devastation.
Mental health concerns are more evident in 16-24 year olds than any other age group. More than one in 10 people aged 16 - 25 have lost their job (double that of older employees), and employment and earnings losses are more common for those from low income families and of BAME origin. This highlights the growing socio-economic disadvantage caused by the pandemic. Whatsmore, 75% of private school pupils were benefiting from full school days in April - almost twice the proportion of state school pupils.
At a time when the future should seem exciting and full of opportunity, young people’s hopes and aspirations are crushed as we head into an economic crisis.
We can change the trajectory of the 'Covid generation.’
Through our national network of business volunteers, F4S has the means to reach all young people in education, to offer guidance, and encouragement to build aspirations, and in still hope that they can create their future as planned pre-covid.
As soon as schools closed in March, we enhanced our platform to offer virtual encounters as well as in-class events (as and when deemed safe), so there are no barriers to offering impactful encounters with every student at a time when they need us most.
Young people need to be offered hope once again. By donating to the Futures4Students Fund you are supporting the future of young people in your family, your community, your industry.
As a mum as well as a proud advocate for what we do at Founders4Schools, I am appealing to all who believe in our young people, the future, and the opportunities they deserve. Together we can make the ‘covid generation’ the ones who battled the odds to reach great heights.
Donate what you can here, follow us, and help spread the word on our social channels, and read more about how F4S, with your support, will ensure #Futures4Students.
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