Twelve members of staff from the Southampton Highways Services Partnership (Southampton City Council and Balfour Beatty) and key members of the supply chain are soon to embark on an exciting programme working alongside Southampton Football Club’s Saints Foundation, to help transform the lives of young people from the city.
With a focus on employability skills and mentoring, the aim of the project is to close the gaps in society; giving young people the support and opportunities they need for a better future. At the same time the volunteers will gain a deep understanding of what challenges these young people face, and how they can proactively make a difference.
The idea came from Balfour Beatty’s Contract Director, Brian Hammersley, who heard about similar programmes being run in other regions of the UK by the social enterprise, Goal 17. He reached out to their founder, Fran Boorman, who has coordinated establishing this programme in Southampton.
Each mentor is currently undergoing extensive Mentoring training while Saints Foundation reach out to young people in the community from disadvantaged backgrounds. In February this year the collaborative programme will see the mentors begin to support their young Mentees and start learning from their perspectives.
Councillor Satvir Kaur, Southampton City Council’s Cabinet Member for Culture and Homes,said: "We are delighted to see our strategic partner, Balfour Beatty, taking the lead on this innovation and highly beneficial programme. The programme will offer a number of the cities young people a fantastic opportunity to develop their skills, confidence and employment prospects."
Mike Dixon from Saints Foundation said: “The young people we work with have so much potential. Sometimes, they are just low in confidence and understanding when it comes to the world of work. Having a professional Mentor to work with them whilst they take part in the Saints Works programme will give them more exposure to employers and another positive role model to help guide them on their journey into employment.”
Fran Boorman from Goal 17 said: “We see this as an incredibly exciting collaboration between many stakeholders who can inspire and influence change across the city. The commitment from all parties has been heart-warming and we are confident that this programme will be the beginning of many conversations and ambitions to create further positive change in Southampton.”
Would your company like to support the next cohort of young people being supported by Saints Foundation? Please contact [email protected] to express an interest. (www.goal17.global)
Do you know a young person who is 16-25 and not in employment, education or training? To find out more about the Saints Works programme, contact David Warnes at [email protected]