BRIGHTON SCHOOLS AND THEIR STUDENTS ARE SUPPORTED BY LOCAL ORGANISATIONS AT LIFE CHANGING EVENT AIMED AT BUILDING CONFIDENCE AND IMPROVING CAREER PROSPECTS
Sussex Police has initiated the launch of an innovative programme in Brighton to inspire young people by building their confidence and self-esteem to improve their employment and educational opportunities. Be the Change, created in 2015, has helped to support 2,000 young people in Sussex and now sees the start of the new Brighton programme with 110 school students from nine Brighton and Hove secondary schools joining the launch event on Thursday, January 31 at the American Express Community Stadium.
The 2019 Brighton programme launched following aspirations of Sussex Police to develop a preventative programme to support disengaged young people. The programme was also made possible following the support and business volunteers from other leading local employers, including headline sponsor Brandwatch and supporting partners American Express, Legal & General, Focus Group and Brighton and Hove City Council. The volunteer business guides from some of Brighton’s biggest employers were touched by the honest and emotional stories from 13 and 14 year old local students who shared their experiences and day-to-day challenges at the Brighton Be the Change event.
110 students and 36 business volunteers took part in activities that focussed on happiness, confidence, hope, relationships and employability, encouraging them to focus on personal qualities as well as qualifications and provide them with techniques to confidently promote themselves. Many of them spoke bravely about the barriers which they feel are holding them back, but now feel more positive about both their education and employment future, through the support of their business volunteers.
Be the Change has been co-developed by Gary Peters of LoveLocalJobs.com and co-founder Graham Moore of metamoorephosis. At the ground breaking launch, the students and business volunteers took part in activities that were created and expertly led by, Graham Moore, a former teacher who understands the challenges facing young people today.
Graham said: “Our vision is for every young person to have raised hope and confidence, to have the chance to develop life skills and create positive cycles that will prepare them for life. Be the Change is a perfect vehicle to help young people develop the qualities and qualifications they need for a better future. The volunteers and the invaluable support and belief of local businesses adds a further dimension and depth to the engagement and journey the young people will experience.”
Founder of LoveLocalJobs.com Gary Peters said: “So many people leave school without the tools, confidence or belief to realise their full potential and Be the Change helps ensure our local next generation can thrive, irrespective of any barriers that may be in their way. Anybody can work to be the best they can be; it’s our commitment to give them the tools, confidence and inspiration to do so.”
Donna Ward, Detective Inspector from Sussex Police said: “We are really proud that alongside our partners, we have been able to make this happen for the young people of Brighton & Hove. We know that there is a direct correlation between school exclusions and the likelihood of being drawn into crime and so supporting those who are disengaged in education and empowering them to make positive choices acts as an excellent early preventative measure.
“As well as the wealth of benefits to the children who have been selected to participate in this programme, this is also a fantastic opportunity for the nine Brighton Police Officers and staff who have volunteered alongside other local businesses to act as mentors for the duration of the programme. We are always looking to develop new ways of engaging with and breaking down barriers with young people and programmes such as this provide the ideal opportunity to do just that.”
Jeremy Holtom, Head of Year 9 at Dorothy Stringer School said: “A superb day. Every student was welcomed and valued. They were given a boost to their confidence and a chance to share and have celebrated what is best about them. I watched a visible and positive change take place in many of my students during the course of the day. An inspirational start to what promises to be a really beneficial programme.”
To find out more about Be the Change, visit http://promotions.lovelocaljobs.com/bethechange/