A new partnership with Enactus LSE promises to step up our offer to Young People and prepare them for work…
It’s an exciting time at Mary’s Youth Club. Could the next business leader emerge from our community centre? Will we discover the next Alan Sugar or Richard Branson here in Islington?
A partnership with London School of Economics will be launched in February in the Zone at Mary’s Youth Club. Young people will be inspired and supported to run their own business over the coming months, mentored by Pathways guides – undergraduate students keen to make a difference in the world around them.
As part of the project, young people will face the challenge of pitching their business proposal to funders and business leaders, exactly as they see on Dragons’ Den. Once funded, they will brand and market their product before taking it to the public!
We’ll be keeping you up-to-date with the project’s progress on our website and in following Marys’ Newsletters.
Parent Partnerships at Mary’s Pre-School
“Wow, you really do know my child!”
When the staff at Mary’s pre-school meet with parents to discuss a child’s progress, these are the words that mean the most. Sharon and her team gather a term’s observations of any individual child in a portfolio allow them to pinpoint and record those special moments and those special days when a child first makes a step of learning. Shortly before Christmas, each Key Person had a meeting with the parents of the children they observe to share the portfolios and talk together. Establishing and developing this relationship of trust is a high priority for the team and it means a great deal when parents take the portfolios of photographs and written notes home to share with grandparents, parents and the wider family over a special season.
“You can really see the difference it has made for him, coming here,” said one parent. When there are photographs and carefully considered notes tracking every child, seeing the difference is part of being the difference for our community.
Mary’s Youth Club are fiercely proud of their co-producers scheme, which employs young people aged 16-19 to help run activities and choose the next steps for the group. The club are currently in the process of appointing three new co-producers, giving them the opportunity to learn by being part of a team, participating in meetings and leading other young people.
As a ‘first job’, the co-producer role offers a first rung on the ladder towards independence and financial security. Being prepared for work was the number one concern identified in a survey taken at the Youth Club recently, and Mary’s are particularly keen to develop this aspect of activities. The process of applying and being interviewed is itself a valuable experience for many applicants, being taken seriously and having a chance to do something they care about! Many of the past co-producers have themselves been members of the Youth Club.
You can hear co-producers speak for themselves here, and find out more about their role on the Mary’s Website.
Stroke Club meets on weekday lunchtimes and caters for people in the community who have suffered a stroke, as well as for their carers. The group has been meeting since at least 1980, making them one of Mary’s longest-term partners.
Since many stroke survivors struggle with mobility and communication, the club provides a place for light-hearted company and understanding, offering patient and non-judgemental ears to help rebuild confidence. Monthly sessions include exercise for the disabled, led by a visiting therapist, singalongs, discussion groups and trips out. The group are very proud to partner with others in the community, including Freightliner’s Farm, Gillespie Park, and Islington Community Transport, who provide much-needed access for clubmembers. “Everywhere we go,” says volunteer Evelyn Thomas, “We’re wonderfully supported by community groups.” Mary’s is very pleased to be able to play a part in this support – hopefully for many years to come! To find out about how you can support the Stroke Club, follow the link below.
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