Znaniye Foundation is delighted to have received funding from the BBC Children in Need's grant programme!
Over the next 3 years, we will be offering bespoke mentoring and support for local Ealing students in school years 6 through to 11. Our goal is to work with the youth in our community, and inspiring figures to build confidence, increase school attainment and show young people just how many wonderful prospects lay ahead in their futures.
Children and Young People in the above year groups will be able to be specifically paired with an inspirational and successful mentor, by completing a thorough self-analysis to gain a deeper insight into what matters and what motivates them. We will then work to match them with a mentor, with similar lived experiences as themselves - who have achieved their own life expectations.
We will work with the children to identify their personal strengths, interests and hobbies, and nurture these to show what they are truly capable of.
Alongside the 1-2-1 mentoring, we will be providing wellbeing, educational and even fitness support.
We will be working to build lasting motivation, working to allow pupils to speak to a professional, for free, and complete the programme with a truly personalised development plan, mapping out the ‘career target grades’ required to reach their long-term goals.
Our goal is to create an opportunity for students to experience new topics, hobbies and subjects that they do not have the chance to experience or learn in school. We want to bring a wide breadth of subjects to the students to broaden their horizons and interests whilst also increasing their educational attainment.
We want to create and facilitate interaction and reducing feelings of isolation, that has only been exacerbated by the pandemic - and along with our wellbeing sessions, we will instil long term confidence, introduce coping mechanisms, and widen their hopes for their education futures by encouraging young peoples abilities! We will work to build an ethos of aspiration, allowing coaches and pupils celebrate their progress and share well wishes for the future.
Through educational support lessons, we will work to ensure increased involvement in students mainstream school. Better knowledge of topics, tuition and guidance will aid clear improvement in the student's attainment in class.
So, just who are our mentors?
Our mentors are typically professionals, or specialist in their fields - who alongside subject knowledge, have lived experiences and are passionate about giving back to the community.
Musicians + Record Label Owners
Entrepreneurs+ Business Owners
Artists + Creatives
Sportsmen + Women
Philanthropists and more...
We look for enthusiastic people who are passionate about change, have respect for our youth, perseverance, understanding, and integrity.
We also understand that not all volunteers have as much experience as others, and some people just need a chance, they need training, upskilling and opportunities. We need these people too!
Become a Mentor
We are on the lookout for mentors, and you might be just the right fit...
We open up applications to anyone passionate, who also feels they align with our goals! We will ask you a series of questions to find out more about you, including your experience and your interests. The experience that we like to keep an eye out for is usually quite personal. We find out about your lived experiences (if you wish to disclose this) about your educational journey and career so far, and your personal hobbies.
To apply to be a mentor - please fill out the application form here:
If we think you are the right fit - you will be fully trained. This includes safeguarding, project and charity specific goals, as well as mentor tips and styles. We will guide you all the way!
Becoming a Mentee! (Student Enrollment)
If you are a student in Ealing, in school years 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 or 11, you can apply to take part in this programme.
This is an incredibly unique way for you to meet someone who has achieved things in their life, that you may aspire to or be inspired by, who will work with you 1-2-1 to get one step closer to those goals. We know that young people from low-income or low access backgrounds do not lack high aspirations. However, they miss out on the guidance and networks they need to develop their aspirations and understand fully the role their education will play in their future success. Through tailored support delivered by inspiring professionals, our programme nurtures the individual aspirations of each young person, inspiring them to achieve at school – and beyond.
Students who are interested will need to complete a short, informal assessment with a mentoring coach, and from there, after finding out more about the student, you are then tailor matched up with a mentor.
Each student has a total of 8 sessions with the mentor during the year, bi-weekly (all online), and will also take part in two 2 group sessions online (introductory and closing) where you can share thoughts, experiences and feedback.
Then at the end of the year, we will have an in-person conference with all our mentees and mentors, volunteers and team, to join inspirational talks and break out sessions.
Alongside the 1-2-1 monitoring programme, we also have other sessions you can join online. These include English, Maths and in-person sports days, as well as wellbeing sessions, all with the goal to help you grow in confidence both academically, and personally.
We are a young team - and we understand how difficult this stage of life can be, and we want to show you that there are many successful people around you, here in Ealing, who have overcome a whole host of issues, to thrive in their community and personally in the careers. We want the same for you.
One of the other main ways we will identify the students/mentees will be by working with local schools. We work with local schools in all our projects, with the goal to ensure that the students who could benefit the most from the offering, are notified and have priority access. This may include students who are struggling with confidence in school, unsure of what next steps they are looking towards in the educational life, those at risk of suspension and exclusion and so on.
Whilst we will be directly in touch with the schools, they or their teachers can also refer a student directly, with the information above.
As mentioned, alongside the 1-2-1 mentoring, students and mentees will also be able to access free educational support - such as Maths, English and Science lessons (including exam support!)
We have a vast track record of offering these interactive and enjoyable core support lessons (you can find out more here!) and they are a fantastic way for you to receive some extra support out of school time, directly from your home, from local tutors and experts.
And not only will you be able to join these - but we also have sports sessions coming up! Think basketball, football, games and more with fun young coaches. A great way to keep active out of school and even meet new people.
And finally... our wellbeing support. Well-being is at the heart of what we do. We want to ensure that young people are being supported both physically and emotionally. Through this, we can work with young people to guide them on a journey to success, self-confidence and resilience. We will have offerings and support for those perhaps struggling with anxiety, tips on how to cope with exam times and with school work, ideas for things you can do at home and with your friends - and we will work as a contact point for you. We are always available!
2022 - 2023 Programme
For the 2023 Academic Year and Year 2 of our Ealing Mentoring Scheme, Funded by BBC Children in Need, we partnered with Ark Acton Academy.
Ark Acton was chosen for this specific programme as they deeply recognise that students are facing difficulties in and outside of school. This relates to support needed for keeping safe, supporting family, emotional regulation and adjusting to new circumstances. Below you can see more data that provides further evidence of the support needed:
In the school, 37% of students are pupil premium and 41% access free school meals.
66% of students have English as a second language with only 29% speaking English as their first language.
11% of students are on our SEN register.
22% of students are mobile (joined anytime after the first day of year 7).
6% of students are white British, 25% are other ethnic groups, and 17% are black African.
Additionally, Ealing has higher rates of ASB than London and the rest of England, along with higher rates of violence and sexual offences than other London boroughs.
Each week, our expertly selected mentors meet for an hour with their matched student mentees to work together on improving identified issues, increasing aspirations, creating goals and more. Each session is entirely custom - meaning the mentee is able to get exactly what they need out of the meetings. Key themes that have been identified include confidence building, managing friendship groups, making smart choices, focusing in school, respect for teachers and authority, benefits of in-school attainment throughout life, dealing with anger, frustration and more.
This year, our mentors come from a wide range of industries and professions including:
On Tuesday the 18th of April 2023 we hosted a very special conference:
"Paving Your Career: Understanding the pathways available after High School"
for the Year 11 Students of Ark Acton Academy, to provide a deeper understanding of the working world, and how to succeed in it.
This conference comes as part of the programme we are providing to Ark Acton Academy this academic year as part of our Ealing Mentoring Scheme, funded by BBC Children in Need.
The conference allowed the Year 11 Students, those at a pivotal age where they are taking their GCSE and choosing their next steps in life, to hear from a wide variety of young professionals from a wide range of industries, each with their own special story of how they got to where they are.
Our professional sat on two panels during the day:
1. Paving your career: Understanding the pathways available after High School
With speakers Leila Hachani, Tosin Adesigbin, Yusuf Sheikh, Keyanna Jandu,
Pippa Pippa Adamthwaite-Cook, Hezron Springer
2. Workplace Expectations: Learning about code of conduct in the workplace,
remuneration and what it takes to stand out at work.
With speakers Speakers: Timur Hashimi, Kishan Patel, Kealey Hodge,
The students were also able to access 3 specialised clinics, covering C.V. Writing, Getting into Further Education Session and Becoming an Entrepreneur. Within each of these breakout sessions, our guests spoke more in-depth about their personal journeys, whilst taking the students through a presentation they had prepared and answering questions.
Take a look Pippa Adamthwaite-Cook's presentation below:
Rounding out the day, we were joined by a third panel of guest Speakers for a final panel:
3. Why school matters: Exploring the importance of education and striving for
The speakers for this round were The Honourable Mushtaq Lasharie CBE, Cllr Munir Ahmed, CEO John Martin and CEO Elly Heaton.
On Tuesday, July 11th, 2023, we proudly hosted our second conference at Ark Acton Academy, extending the invitation to both Years 9 and 10 students.
This thoughtfully curated event provided a platform for students to engage with a fresh cohort of young professionals, gaining valuable insights into their educational paths and current careers. Following the highly successful format of our inaugural conference, our distinguished professionals convened on a panel to commence the proceedings:
Topic 1: The Power of Co-curricular Activities and Volunteering: Unlocking Opportunities and Personal Growth
Speakers: Ayo, Kitty, Nisna, Elikem, Sonny, Evie
Subsequently, our students were privileged to be graced by the presence of Sonny Poon Tip, an established actor and A&R authority, who eloquently spoke about:
Navigating Possibilities: Exploring Life's Horizons Beyond the School Environment in the Dynamic City of London
The programme then transitioned to an illuminating Masterclass focused on CV composition and interview acumen. This segment equipped students with a crash course in crafting compelling CVs, illuminating their significance, and what employers look out for.
Our next key speaker, Ravi Gohil, is a remarkable individual who has embarked on a journey filled with unexpected twists and turns. Now, at the age of 25, Ravi has found his stride in a successful career as a sales manager for a software company. Ravi’s speech focused on:
Life Isn't Always Linear: Embracing Unexpected Paths and Finding Your True Calling.
In the spirit of each conference, we enlisted distinguished local luminaries who could impart distinct perspectives on careers and the essence of success. This time, we had the distinct honour of hosting Dr Aysha Raza, a prominent Labour Councillor, alongside Conservative Councillor Seema Kumar, both of whom offered insightful dialogues to our eager young audience.
Culminating the day's proceedings was an impassioned address by the remarkable musician Xadi, who shared his story through his speech:
Proving Them Wrong
Once again, this event afforded us the opportunity to candidly present to our students the diverse pathways that lie before them, even in the face of challenges. Not all journeys are linear, and our aspiration is to embolden them to take calculated risks, pursue their passions unwaveringly, and persevere through setbacks with unwavering determination.