In the Know – Learn new skills this Summer!

In the Know – Learn new skills this Summer!

In The Know What's new?

The Summer holidays are a perfect opportunity for young people to learn new skills. This will not only expand their knowledge and keep their minds active, but it will also expose them to new career fields and interests that could help them reach their aspirations. Here are a few upcoming skill-building opportunities that your child could be interested in.

Architecture Summer School: Making Happy Places
Making Happy Places is a five-day free summer school where young people will learn about architecture and the environment and gain practical skills in drawing, model making and portfolio making. Young people between the ages of 15-18 will learn how the built environment and architecture has a direct impact on their lives, while also learning more about the opportunities in this career field. The summer school will take place from Monday 12th August to Friday 16th August. Find out more here

Pen to Print: Creative Writing Workshop
Pen to Print and Barking Library is running a free creative writing workshop for young people between the ages of 11-14. Children’s author, Sara Grant, will help young people to create stories and inspire and encourage them to develop their creative writing skills. The workshop is taking place on Wednesday 14th August from 2pm. Find out more here

CoderDojo @ Brandon Library
CoderDojo is running a free coding workshop for young people between the ages of 11-17 at Brandon Library in Southwark. This workshop will help young people to learn to code in a fun and creative environment, and they are not required to have any previous coding experience. The workshop will be taking place on Saturday 3rd August from 12pm. Find out more here

GT Scholars is a not-for-profit social enterprise and registered charity. We run after-school and weekend programmes that help young people achieve their academic and career aspirations. Our programmes include tutoring, mentoring and enrichment sessions for young people aged 11-18. Contact us if you would like to know more about any of our programmes and courses.

7 Useful Skills You Can Develop Through Volunteer Mentoring

7 Useful Skills You Can Develop Through Volunteer Mentoring

Volunteers What's new?

Volunteer mentoring is a rewarding role that offers the opportunity to really make a tangible and effective difference in the lives of young people. Volunteer mentors receive a real sense of purpose and many other emotional paybacks from their work.

Together with these rewards, volunteer mentors also learn valuable new skills and experiences that they can apply to their career or personal life. Here a 7 useful skills that you can gain from volunteer mentoring.

Emotional Intelligence
Emotional intelligence is defined as the capacity and ability to be aware of, control, and express one’s emotions effectively. Emotional intelligence affects all areas of your life, especially with regards to handling interpersonal relationships and displaying empathy. As a mentor, you have to listen to your mentee and empathise with their situation. You have to put yourself in their shoes so that you can understand what they are going through and relate it to yourself. You will then have to communicate your understanding in an effective way so that they feel like their feelings are being acknowledged and appreciated. These interactions will build up your emotional intelligence and help you to handle all interpersonal relationships well. In a work environment, this skill will be especially useful when working in a team or with your colleagues in general. It will help you to lead team discussions, resolve and avoid conflicts, and ensure that everyone is cooperating and working together effectively.  

Leadership and Management Skills
As a mentor, you are put in a position of authority and you are looked upon as a role model and a source of guidance. Though this may seem daunting, being a role model teaches you important leadership and management lessons such as responsibility, effective communication, time management, and accountability. It is your responsibility as a mentor to ensure that mentoring sessions take place on schedule, that discussions are productive, and that desired outcomes are reached. It is also your responsibility to motivate your mentee and ensure that they feel supported. These skills will help you manage your work tasks well which will show employers that you are responsible enough to take on leadership roles. 

Adaptability
As a mentor, you will usually work with a different mentee every term or year. This will expose you to a wide range of various young people with different personalities, talents, and aspirations. They will also be from different backgrounds and face different challenges in their everyday life. Through this, you will learn how to adapt your mentoring sessions to the young person specifically. This will build your adaptability skills which will make you more versatile and make it easier for you to work under change or pressure, which is something valued by employers. This exposure to different people will also build interpersonal skills and that will help you to relate to different types of people. This is valuable in the workplace as you will be interacting with many different people from various departments and companies, and also from various cultures and nationalities. 

Self-Reflection and Self-Evaluation
Volunteer mentoring and listening to a young person’s thoughts and feelings will put you in a position to reflect on your own life. You will use your own life and the decisions you made to mentor the young person, setting examples of good and bad responses, reactions, and decisions. Reflecting on yourself allows you to become more self-aware and better at making future decisions. It allows you to pause and evaluate yourself to make sure that you are doing the right thing, and it makes you more aware of the consequences of your actions so that you will now know how to prevent negative outcomes. For example, if you know that a certain habit or behaviour has negative effects on your colleagues or friends, then you will learn to work on changing this habit or behaviour. Self-evaluation is an important part of personal development and it will have positive effects on various aspects of your life.

Resilience
Resilience is about keeping a positive attitude in the face of adversity, and it is often related to self-confidence and self-belief. It is one of the main skills you will teach a young person as a volunteer mentor. It is an important skill that will help them to face current and future challenges, keep a clear mind when dealing with adversity, and to never give up. As a volunteer mentor, you will set a good example by building up your own resilience and believing in yourself. This will greatly increase your confidence which will improve the way you work and interact with people. 

Developing a Personal Brand
As a volunteer mentor, you will be delivering a consistent message to young people that you have developed from your own life, your past decisions, and your experiences. This consistent message will become a personal brand that will be easily identifiable to your mentee. A personal brand will show others that you are someone who has specific skills and talents. It will make you stand out to employers and colleagues and it will make you more confident in yourself and more charismatic. Developing a personal brand is also helpful to entrepreneurs as it will help develop your business identity and to network with other businesses and entrepreneurs. 

Problem Solving
During mentoring sessions, your mentee will usually approach you with a problem or situation that they are facing or not sure how to deal with. They will come to you for encouragement but more importantly for advice and effective solutions. This builds up your problem-solving skills. It will teach you how to look at a problem with objectivity, to find a solution for the problem, and to find a way to prevent the problem from happening again. This skill is something that you will definitely need for any workplace in any career. Even if your work is straightforward and easy, you will eventually face challenges in some way or form that you will need to solve. If you have good problem-solving skills, you will be able to show employers that you can solve a range of challenges, and you will also show them that you can solve challenges without their help. This independence will show them that you are capable and efficient.  

This is by no means an exhaustive list of the skills that you can gain from volunteering as a mentor. You will find even more useful skills and tools that you can apply to both your career and personal life. 

If you would like to help a young person between the ages of 14 and 18 to achieve their career or personal aspirations, then contact us to find out how you can join our after-school mentoring programme. Our mentoring programme welcomes volunteer mentors from various career fields and backgrounds. Visit our website to find out more.

Volunteers and Friends of GT Scholars – Volunteer this summer!

Volunteers and Friends of GT Scholars – Volunteer this summer!

Friends of GT Scholars Volunteers

We hope you’ve had an amazing week and are as excited as we are to be stepping into the first summer weekend! It’s also the start of Volunteers’ Week, and this week’s newsletter includes some great volunteer opportunities you can get involved in. Curious to find out how? Read on for more details!

Something new is heading your way!

We’re so grateful for the support we get from our volunteers and it’s volunteers just like you that make a huge difference in the lives of our young people. Over the past few weeks, we’ve been cooking up some ideas of a fun activity for Volunteers Week and beyond. We’ve been working on something that all our volunteers can participate in and we’ll be sharing further details with you in the coming week – So keep an eye out for what we have in store!

Invite us to Speak!
As you know, we’re all about creating opportunities for young people, especially those from low-income backgrounds, to succeed in school and beyond. We’d love to share more about what we do with people so that we can increase our reach and continue to help young people in need! If you know of any forums or speaking engagements you think we could be a part of to make this happen, then please get in touch with me to chat further.

Write a Blog Post!

If you’re looking for a quick and easy way to volunteer, you can join us as a guest blogger for our blog!  The blog posts are a great way for you to share your thoughts with our scholars and parents about education, social mobility and potential careers for young people. If you’d like to be a guest blogger, you can get in touch with me or get further details here.

GT Scholars is a not-for-profit social enterprise and registered charity. Our after-school tutoring, mentoring and enrichment programme is designed to help young people aged 11-18 achieve their academic and career aspirations. Visit our website if you’d like to know more about the GT Scholars Programme and how you can make a significant difference in young people’s lives.

 

Volunteers and Friend of GT Scholars – Volunteer this summer!

Volunteers and Friend of GT Scholars – Volunteer this summer!

Volunteers

Top of the morning to you on this awesome Friday! Hope you are looking forward to the official start of summer this weekend! This week’s newsletter includes some great volunteer opportunities you can get involved in this summer. Curious to find out more? Read on for more details!

Invite us to Speak!
As you know, we are all about creating more opportunities for young people, especially those from low-income backgrounds, to succeed in school and beyond. We would love to share more about what we do with people so that we can increase our reach and help even more young people in need! If you know of any forums or speaking engagements you think we could be a part of to make this happen, then please get in touch with me to chat further.

Did you know!
Foster Care Fortnight, the Fostering Network’s annual campaign to bring awareness to the way foster care transforms lives, took place last week. One of the things highlighted is the large number of young people living in care who struggle with educational attainment and reaching their aspirations. One of the ways you can help to spread awareness about young people living in care is to write a blog post for our website. A blog post is a great way for you to share your thoughts with our scholars and parents, not only about young people living in care, but also on education, social mobility, and careers. If you’d like to be a guest blogger, you can get in touch with me or find out more here.

Follow us on social media!
We would love for you to follow us on any of our social media platforms so that you can like, share and comment on our posts and also share other posts you think would make for an interesting blog post! Join the conversation on our Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and Instagram pages.

GT Scholars is a not-for-profit social enterprise and registered charity. Our after-school tutoring, mentoring and enrichment programme is designed to help young people aged 11-18 achieve their academic and career aspirations. Visit our website if you’d like to know more about the GT Scholars Programme and how you can make a significant difference in young people’s lives.

Volunteers and Friends of GT Scholars – New opportunities to look out for!

Volunteers and Friends of GT Scholars – New opportunities to look out for!

Friends of GT Scholars Volunteers

We hope your week has been a fantastic one! We are definitely excited to hear the news that Oxford University is taking progressive steps to widen access to disadvantaged students and we hope to see more impactful changes like this take place across the education sector! We’d love to hear your thoughts on this! We also have some exciting news to share on what’s been happening here at GT Scholars – read on to find out more!

 

Coding Workshop Facilitators needed
We’re looking for workshop facilitators with a background in coding and computer science to run our coding workshops coming up this year. Our coding workshops help young people to learn new skills for a 21st-century career and we are looking forward to helping even more young people this year. So if you know the difference between C, C# and C++ then get in touch with me. If you know a colleague or friend that would be interested, they can get in touch with us through our contact page.

We’re looking for another School Partnership Manager
As part of our goal to reach every borough in London (yes all 33 of them!) we are looking for another school partnership manager to join our team. The school partnership manager will be responsible for delivering presentations to schools across London and meeting with school leaders and parents to discuss and pitch our programmes. If you have excellent presentation skills and some experience working in the education sector, you can send us an email with your CV. Want to find out more about the role? You can read this.

Event Volunteers Needed
We ran our first workshop of the term, the GT Scholars Maths Marathon, last week and it went really well! We would like to extend a big thank you to the workshop facilitators and event volunteers who helped make the event a success! If you would like to be a part of our event volunteer team, feel free to get in touch with me.

GT Scholars is a not-for-profit social enterprise and registered charity. Our after-school tutoring, mentoring and enrichment programme is designed to help young people aged 11-18 achieve their academic and career aspirations. Visit our website if you’d like to know more about the GT Scholars Programme and how you can make a significant difference in young people’s lives.

 

Why It Is Important For Our Volunteers To Receive Safeguarding Training

Why It Is Important For Our Volunteers To Receive Safeguarding Training

Volunteers What's new?

As part of the recruitment process, all of our volunteers have to undergo safeguarding training. One of the first things to understand about safeguarding training is that it is not limited to young people only. Safeguarding training is implemented in order to ensure the welfare of many different types of individuals, particularly young people, but also vulnerable adults to protect them from any potential harm. 

This would include protection from any form of abuse and mistreatment and creating a safe environment in which they are able to develop in a healthy and safe space. Safeguarding looks to minimise the physical and mental risks that young people can be exposed to by those that work with them.  

It is imperative that all volunteers that work with and would like to work with young people or vulnerable adults receive sufficient safeguarding training. It is also a legal requirement and all organisations must have a safeguarding policy in place. Here are a few reasons why safeguarding training is important for our volunteers.

Awareness
One of the important aspects of safeguarding training for volunteers is that it helps you to identify and be aware of specific signs of abuse, neglect and vulnerability amongst the young people you are working with. This allows you to actively monitor the young people you are in contact with and to be consciously aware of their wellbeing. Safeguarding also allows you to be aware of any potential psychological and physical risks regarding the work you are doing with the young people you are responsible for.

Conduct
Safeguarding training equips you with the right tools you need to conduct yourself professionally with the young people you will be working with. It teaches you how to approach and deal with situations that may arise concerning the young people in your care and how best to ensure a conducive, safe and healthy environment for them. Safeguarding training also helps to ensure your own safety and how to conduct yourself in sensitive situations that may arise when working with young people or vulnerable adults.

Clarity
Safeguarding training helps you to know what your role is and how to best fulfil it when working together with young people. It sets out clear-cut boundaries that are helpful in understanding what is required of you in terms of your skills, experience and time commitment. The training also provides well-defined procedures and rules to adhere to according to the organisation you are working for. You learn how to report particular incidents and how to safeguard sensitive information pertaining to the young people you will be working with as well as the organisation. Safeguarding training also helps you to keep a sense of perspective and proportion between benefits and risks involved with the volunteer role you will be taking on. Through the safeguarding training, you are able to determine whether you are able to commit to what is required of you.

Reassurance
It is important as a volunteer that you are sufficiently trained in order to reassure the parents of the young people you will be working with. Parents need to know that their children are in good hands when dealing with organisations who work with their children and the staff and volunteers who are a part of that organisation. This is why organisations run DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) checks. DBS checks not only provide some reassurance for parents but they also help to protect organisations and young people. It creates transparency for all parties involved and helps organisations and parents know more about the volunteers. It is an essential safety precaution. 

Communication
Safeguarding training allows for effective channels of communication to be formed and developed.  As a volunteer, you need to be able to communicate well, not only with the organisation you work for but also with the young people in your care. This creates a trusting and safe environment for them to be able to relay their needs and wellbeing to you.

Knowledge
Safeguarding training also provides an opportunity for you as a volunteer to get to know more about the organisation you are applying to work for and the more intricate details of how the organisation operates. It gives you an insight into their procedures and approaches that are set in place in dealing with the young people you will be working with. 

Overall, safeguarding training is there to help ensure the safety and protection of the individuals, particularly young people that are exposed to working with volunteers and other individuals who oversee their care in whichever form. It is set in place in order to help equip you as a volunteer and help with preparing you for your role when dealing with young people or vulnerable adults. This will allow you to do your best as a volunteer and it will create an efficient, safe and healthy working environment. 

GT Scholars is a not-for-profit social enterprise and registered charity. Our after-school tutoring, mentoring and enrichment programme is designed to help young people aged 11-18 achieve their academic and career aspirations. Visit our website if you’d like to know more about the GT Scholars Programme and how you can make a significant difference in young people’s lives.

Volunteers and Friends of GT Scholars – New term, New opportunities!

Volunteers and Friends of GT Scholars – New term, New opportunities!

Friends of GT Scholars Volunteers

We hope you’ve had a great week! As one term ends and a new one begins we’d like to give a special shout out to all the volunteers who were active last term and those that signed up this term. Read on for more details about upcoming volunteer opportunities.

Can you support us on 18th or 29th May?
We need volunteers, workshop facilitators and event coordinators to help us at our upcoming workshops in May. The first workshop will be on Saturday 18th May 2019 at Goldsmiths University from 10am to 4pm. The second workshop will be on Wednesday 29th May 2019 at the Rio Tinto offices in London from 10am to 4pm. Please let me know if you’re available to help on one or both of these dates and I’ll get in touch to share more details with you.

Do you know of a great space for our Volunteer Meetups?  
Time spent with our volunteers is time well spent! We are planning our next Volunteer Meetup for this Summer and in search of the perfect venue. If you have a great space in mind, then please feel free to email us so we can get in contact with them. Keep an eye out for more details about the meetup in future newsletters. We look forward to seeing you there!

How undergraduates can boost their CV
There are many short-term and long-term benefits that volunteer tutors receive. One of these benefits is how a volunteer tutor role can boost your CV, especially if you’re an undergraduate. This latest blog post delves deeper into how you can leverage your volunteer tutoring experience into CV-boosting qualities and skills. You can read the full post here.

GT Scholars is a not-for-profit social enterprise and registered charity. Our after-school tutoring, mentoring and enrichment programme is designed to help young people aged 11-18 achieve their academic and career aspirations. Visit our website if you’d like to know more about the GT Scholars Programme and how you can make a significant difference in young people’s lives.

Volunteers and Friends of GT Scholars – Can you support us at our next event?

Volunteers and Friends of GT Scholars – Can you support us at our next event?

Friends of GT Scholars Volunteers

We hope you’re having an awesome Easter weekend so far! Before you dig into some hot cross buns and Easter eggs, we would like to update you on a few things. Read on for more on an upcoming workshop, an insightful scholar spotlight for you to watch, and some details on how you can help us reach more volunteers.

Can you support us at our upcoming workshop?
We need event volunteers, workshop facilitators and event coordinators to support us at our next workshop for young people on our programme. The workshop will take place at Goldsmiths University on Saturday 18th May 2019 from 10am-4pm. Please let me know if you’re available to help on this date and I’ll get in touch to share more details with you.

Help us reach more volunteers
Technology has brought us closer than ever before, with your friend or colleague just being a text, tweet or DM away. We embrace this and we know that word-of-mouth is a powerful and useful tool. So if you would like to help us reach more volunteers, we will appreciate it if you can tell a friend or colleague about us. You can refer them to our contact page, or you can get in touch with us and we’ll send you some material that you can forward to friends and colleagues.

Watch our latest scholar spotlight
In this scholar spotlight, we spoke to Tatiana, who has been on our programme for more than two years now. Before joining the programme, she found herself procrastinating too much and not having much confidence. After she joined GT Scholars and got a tutor, she managed to gain self-confidence and greatly improve her Maths skills, so much so, that she entered a global Maths competition with hundreds of schools taking part and she got placed third overall! You can watch the full interview here.

GT Scholars is a not-for-profit social enterprise and registered charity. Our after-school tutoring, mentoring and enrichment programme is designed to help young people aged 11-18 achieve their academic and career aspirations. Visit our website if you’d like to know more about the GT Scholars Programme and how you can make a significant difference in young people’s lives.

Here’s why young people want to join our programme!

Here’s why young people want to join our programme!

What's new?

We want to make sure that young people have a chance to tell us why they want to join one of our programmes. So, as part of the application process for each term, we ask for all applicants to write a short essay about themselves, their role models and why they want to join GT Scholars.

Here are a few excerpts from some of our favourite essays that we received this term.

I am a very ambitious person; I believe that joining GT Scholars would be the perfect way for me to successfully achieve my academic and career aspirations, of working in the finance or science industry. Also I believe joining GT Scholars would help me to improve my grades in school and in turn enter any top university or apprenticeship of my choice in the future – Abigail, age 15

I would like to join the GT Scholars programme because I would like to go to UCL and study computer science and mechanical engineering. I would like to learn complicated programming so that I could develop software that can help people and companies – Ameer, age 11

I personally would like to join the programme solely due to me wanting to advance in my subjects and to get a good future career. As I have chosen maths as my preferred subject for application I’d like to work on that and improve it to the best of my ability. I wouldn’t say that I’m struggling in maths however I do believe that I could be performing far better than what I currently am – Pedram, age 15

Maths is one of my favorite subjects because of how easy it is for me. English however is not easy due to it not being as literal and straight to the point as math is, I struggle a bit with analyzing texts and when it comes to writing stories, I can think of an idea, but I struggle with getting the words onto a page. I hope the GT Scholars Programme can help me find English a bit easier and to be able to tackle questions with more confidence – Jaylen, age 14

I want to become a psychiatrist when I’m older, therefore I need to achieve the best and develop the skills I have now, since it is a competitive field of a career. Joining the programme is important to me because I think I would really benefit from extra support with my work, and I believe that this programme will give me the help I need to be able to achieve the best I can possibly do – Maria-Stephanie, age 15

I would like to join the GT scholars programme as I believe I could thrive with the support provided. I like that I would have access to a mentor as well as a tutor who can provide me with help and challenges in order to flourish. When I am older, I aspire to be a financial lawyer. I believe with the help of GT scholars it is
possible for me to achieve this goal as both my mentor and my tutor could provide me with the support and advice I need to reach this – Jessica, age 14

I would like to join the GT Scholars programme because I generally don’t have a set career path that I want to pursue and I believe that this will help me to figure out my future career. My main aspiration is to own a business at some point of my life, but at the moment I don’t have access to any workshops or opportunities that will help me decide if it actually is something that I want to pursue – Laura, Age 15

I am very excited to see how this will turn out for me. I have heard that GT Scholars uses a variety of techniques to help me and I want to be able to gain these techniques and use these techniques myself to help me. I am excited to be a part of this opportunity and this new tutoring experience. I want to gain a lot from this programme, and I believe I will – Ahmad, age 15

There are many reasons why young people want to join one of our programmes. Some want to improve their grades at school so they can access their dream career, while others want some help with figuring out their future aspirations.

With the range of programmes we offer, we are able to help young people with whatever they need. We run after-school and weekend programmes that help young people achieve their academic and career aspirations. Our programmes include tutoring, mentoring and enrichment sessions for young people aged 11-18. Contact us if you would like to know more about any of our programmes and courses.

Volunteers and Friends of GT Scholars – Upcoming workshops and volunteer opportunities!

Volunteers and Friends of GT Scholars – Upcoming workshops and volunteer opportunities!

Friends of GT Scholars Volunteers

Happy Friday! We hope you’ve got on your best hat for Wear A Hat Day today! Meanwhile, our thinking caps are on as we start planning the scholar matches for the new term. In this week’s newsletter, we have details of upcoming workshop facilitator opportunities, a parent interview to watch and volunteer opportunities for the new term. Read on for more!

Workshop facilitators needed for upcoming events
We’re looking for workshop facilitators for our next two events on our Raising Aspirations Programme. The first event is on Monday 15th April from 10am-4pm and will be a visit to Clifford Chance and Queen Mary, University of London. The second event is on Tuesday 16th April from 10am-4pm and will be a visit to Lloyd’s Bank. If you’re interested in working with young people living in care, please contact me and I’ll get in touch to share more details.

Volunteer tutors needed for the new term!
As more applications for the new term roll in, we want to make sure that we can match as many scholars as we can with an English or Maths tutor. We need online volunteer tutors that are available for just one hour a week throughout the 12-week term. If you’re interested in volunteering, please reply to this email, or if you know someone else that could help, please feel free to forward this email to them and they can get in touch through the contact page on our website.

Watch our latest parent interview
We hope you’ve been enjoying our spotlight series! The next spotlight is an interview with a parent of one of the scholars on our Bright Ambitions programme. In this interview, he explains the difference he’s seen in his child’s grades and confidence. He also shares some insight about the value of combining tutoring with mentoring and enrichment. You can watch the full interview here.

GT Scholars is a not-for-profit social enterprise and registered charity. Our after-school tutoring, mentoring and enrichment programme is designed to help young people aged 11-18 achieve their academic and career aspirations. Visit our website if you’d like to know more about the GT Scholars Programme and how you can make a significant difference in young people’s lives.