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Interim GM Mayor backs inspirational youth volunteering scheme

14/01/2016

Interim GM Mayor backs inspirational youth volunteering scheme

An innovative youth volunteering programme, helping hundreds of school children across Greater Manchester, has been praised by Interim Greater Manchester Mayor, Tony Lloyd.

City Year Greater Manchester brings together young volunteers, aged 18-25, to give ‘a year of service’ as mentors, tutors and role models in schools to support pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds.

City Year Volunteers offer support to Greater Manchester’s most disadvantaged young people - helping them to improve their learning but also to address any behavioural or social issues that they face.

The charity, which officially launched in the region in October 2015, has had a transformative effect on both the volunteers and the children they support. Volunteers leave more equipped for the workplace with 92% going into full-time education or employment 3 months after leaving the programme.

In Greater Manchester’s first City Year they have already recruited more than 30 volunteers who are volunteering in four schools across the city-region.

Anna Wroblewska, City Year Greater Manchester Volunteer at Chorlton High, said:  “I joined City Year to make an impact on young students because my experience in school was far from supportive and, due to the many issues I was facing, I didn't feel safe or cared for.

“As a young adult, I therefore wanted to be a part of an organisation which values support for the children and young people who need it most. From just a short time in school, I have already seen significant changes in the young people I closely work with, in both behaviour and attitude. They are gradually growing in confidence and self-esteem and beginning to believe they are worth something which is incredibly rewarding for me to see.

“Chorlton High School and City Year go the extra mile to ensure that the young people who study there achieve all they are capable of and I am lucky to be a part of that. If I am able to positively impact even just one student's experience of school and help them believe in themselves, then I will leave my year of service satisfied”

Yesterday (Wednesday 13 January) Tony Lloyd visited pupils and volunteers at Chorlton High School who are taking part in City Year Greater Manchester.

Following the visit he said, “City Year’s work in Greater Manchester highlights the difference that can be made when we harness the skills and knowledge of our amazing young people.

“Anybody would be inspired by the stories of both the volunteers and school pupils and difference that this programme clearly makes to our most disadvantaged young people. 

“I hope that many more young people choose to volunteer as part of City Year in the future and that more of our schools can benefit from the fantastic work that they do.”

Zoe Morris, Headteacher at Chorlton High School, said: “Our school has a resolute focus on nurturing, supporting and inspiring all our students to become confident, motivated young people. We were therefore excited about the opportunity to work with City Year Greater Manchester as they share a similar commitment to transforming the lives of their young volunteers and the students in schools.

“We have worked with City Year since September and they have already become a valued part of our school, contributing to the everyday life of the school and building strong relationships with students. It has been uplifting to see how the confidence of both the students and team members has grown over the past few months and we look forward to seeing how they can continue to motivate and inspire our students throughout the year.”

Sophie Livingstone, Chief Executive of City Year UK said:  "We are thrilled that Mayor Tony Lloyd could visit Chorlton High School today to see the impact our inspirational volunteers are having in Greater Manchester. We are incredibly proud of our partnership with the school. This region’s young people have the energy, talent and determination to create profound change in their local community.  What they won’t fully realise until next summer is how life-changing giving a year will be for them as well. 

“The team of volunteers serving at Chorlton High School‎ are just one snapshot of City Year UK's impact.  We now have over 150 young adults volunteering in 24 schools, supporting 14,300 students in London, Birmingham and Greater Manchester. We look forward to working with Mr. Lloyd and expanding our service in Greater Manchester and beyond."

City Year Greater Manchester is now recruiting for full-year placements from August 2016.