“There is an opportunity for those of us with greater experience of life to give something back to society. Mentoring can change the life of a young person. Support them through their education and guide them along a positive pathway. The only qualification needed is to put a young person first,” Iain MacRitchie, MCR Founder
Today, Thursday 30th November, The Times Scotland published more fantastic MCR coverage. Raising awareness of our mentoring programme and encouraging more people in Scotland to support the country’s youngsters:
Not long ago there was a consensus. Having borne the burden of world war and reconstruction, the older members of society needed support while the young enjoyed the fruits of their elders’ labours.
What a difference a few years — and a financial crisis — can make. That older generation is passing on and their offspring aren’t held in the same regard. David Willetts, in his book The Pinch, accuses the baby-boomers of stealing the future from their children and grand-children.
Yet, instead of pulling up the ladder, there is an opportunity for those of us with greater experience of life to give something back to society. Mentoring can change the life of a young person. Support them through their education and guide them along a positive pathway. The only qualification needed is to put a young person first.
Mentoring can have just as much of an influence on the mentor. Everyone wins. The beauty of what we at MCR Pathways have built over ten years is the sheer simplicity of it all. All these brilliant young people need is a platform to begin to believe in themselves, to grow and gain confidence, and to express their talents.
School-based mentoring is that platform and has helped transform attainment levels from 49 per cent of our most disadvantaged young people in Glasgow progressing from school to college, university or employment, to 81 per cent. The difference is down to a caring adult listening, building a relationship of trust and helping that young person find, grow and use their talents.
One example is Nicole who, in care at 15, was low on confidence, trust and self-belief. What we helped to provide was simply someone to spend time with her and to listen, to be reliable and committed. Fast forward a few years and she has achieved so much — success at college, recognition with awards, and now the confidence to live abroad for a year with a university place waiting on her return. That’s what giving your time and listening can achieve. From just 50 minutes a week, Nicole’s life has been turned around — and her mentor has enjoyed immeasurable benefits too.
Relationships and role models matter and can be the difference between disadvantaged young people being defined by their potential and talent rather than circumstances. The proven results are now leading to organisations committing to a proportion of all their staff becoming MCR mentors. Together, we can make a difference to the lives of the next generation of Scots.
We have many inspiring young people asking for MCR’s help. They need mentors to make a huge difference to their confidence, educational outcomes and future life chances. Can you help them? Find out more about becoming a mentor.
Can your organisation help? To become involved in our Talent Taster programme, alongside our partners, simply GET INVOLVED!! We can’t wait to work with you to offer our city’s most needy a gateway to an expanding menu of opportunities and tasters of university, college and employment.
We’re always looking for new mentors to reach all the new young people who are coming on board with the programme. Help us spread the word by letting your friends and family know how worthwhile mentoring can be!