London City Airport launches new mentoring programme with Oasis Academy Silvertown
London City Airport has announced that it has launched a new mentoring programme to raise young people’s aspirations, support young people into employment, and 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 with the aim to help young people 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 supporting them to thrive with new skills and personal development opportunities ahead of leaving school.
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 across the country 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 lower income backgrounds.
The airport has committed to addressing this need by working in partnership with charity partner 15BillionEBP and local schools to pair airport staff with young people 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 fulfil their potential. The airport has a strong track record of recruiting locally and we hope 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, 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 in LCY. The programme tests the boundaries of a conventional mentoring scheme and is completely tailored to address current issues 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."
Johanna Thompson, Principal at Oasis Academy Silvertown, said; “I am delighted about this partnership between London City Airport and Oasis Academy Silvertown to provide a high quality mentoring programme to a cohort of our Year 9 students. We are ambitious and aspirational for all students at Oasis Silvertown and are thankful to 15BillionEBP and London City Airport for this excellent opportunity. We look forward to seeing our students develop their knowledge and skills as well as build their confidence and character through the programme.”
The mentoring programme will run between June 2021 and July 2022. Volunteers from the airport will commit to delivering eight sessions to fifteen Year 9 students aged 14-15 from Oasis Academy Silvertown.
Initial workshops will focus on goal setting and enabling positive attitudes and social behaviours. Later sessions will consider preparations for the world of work, focusing on wellbeing, personal development as well as employability skills and work experience.
All volunteers will be trained as mentors by the airport’s partner 15BillionEBP prior to starting the programme. 15BillionEBP will also provide DBS checks and a safe and secure online platform for contacting students.
The partnership with Oasis Academy Silvertown is the first step and the scheme has the potential to be rolled out to more schools over time to widen the programme’s reach and ability to enable positive change in the local community.
The youth mentoring scheme follows the launch of the London City Helpers programme earlier this year which has seen airport staff volunteer to deliver careers talks, participate in STEM skills workshops and assist with local food bank deliveries.
These activities build on the airport’s strong track record of employing local people and supporting its communities. The airport will shortly announce the groups that have been successful in securing the latest tranche of grants from its £75k Community Fund. Applications closed on Friday 28 May and will be considered by the Board of Trustees before the grants are announced in July.