London City Airport launches youth mentoring programme

In order to support young people in the local community following the impact of COVID-19 on their mental health and learning, London City Airport has launched a new youth mentoring programme.

London City Airport launches youth mentoring programme

Credit: London City Airport

London City Airport (LCY) has announced that it has launched a new mentoring programme to raise young people’s aspirations, to help to tackle youth unemployment and to promote social mobility in the local communities near the airport.

In partnership with 15BillionEBP, staff from the airport will volunteer to mentor local students in East London who are at risk of leaving school with low attainment and becoming ‘Not in Education, Employment, or Training’ (NEET), with the aim to help young people to fulfil their potential and prepare them for leaving education and entering the world of work.

Staff from the airport will volunteer and be trained as mentors by 15BillionEBP, coaching young people via bespoke sessions aimed at fostering resilience, increasing motivation and breaking the cycle of low attainment, social inequality and deprivation.

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a devastating impact on the airport’s local communities in East London. In particular, the school closures meant that many students from disadvantaged backgrounds missed out on important learning, and the lockdowns and isolation have taken their toll on young people’s mental health and wellbeing.

The lack of space to learn and/or access to computer equipment at home also has the potential to widen inequalities and attainment gaps for students from more deprived backgrounds.

The airport has committed to addressing this inequality by working in partnership with charity partner 15BillionEBP and local schools to pair airport staff with young people who are in need of dedicated coaching and mentoring support.

Nazmin Begum, Community Engagement Executive at London City Airport, said: “The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on our local communities, and young people have been hit particularly hard. That’s why we are launching our new youth mentoring programme, with volunteers from the airport acting as mentors for students to help them to fulfil their potential. The airport has a strong track record of recruiting locally, and we hope that this new scheme will raise the aspirations of young East Londoners and create pathways to further education and employment.”

Rezaul Hussain, Head of Business Development & Partnerships at 15BillionEBP, said: “We’re delighted to be partnering up with London City Airport on this bespoke programme that connects local students with a community-focussed employer such as LCY. The programme tests the boundaries of a conventional mentoring scheme and is completely tailored to address the current issues that young people face, from personal and professional development, as well as raising aspirations and preparing young people for the world of work. We are particularly pleased to be able to deliver interventions that also address key areas on self-efficacy and wellbeing.”

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