Social Mobility – Bridge Builders Mentoring Scheme

Overview

The Men’s Room has recently launched its ‘Bridge Builders’ Mentoring Scheme.  The scheme is designed to connect young males with mentors who can help build bridges that mentees can cross to improve their chances in life.  

The need for greater role models for people from these backgrounds is an issue that has been covered frequently by the press.  To read of just two examples click here and here.

Research indicates that there is a £24 billion cost to the economy across the areas of Education, The Criminal Justice System and Employment as a result of young males failing to reach their potential. Mentoring is where an experienced person shares their knowledge, experience and skills with another person to enable to them to grow and develop.

Many children grow up with caring parents, grandparents, aunties, uncles, teachers or another adult that takes an interest in them and provides them with guidelines and the direction needed to face the adversities that life may bring. Regrettably, too many people lack the influence of a mentor in their life and consequently attempt to figure out life for themselves. There is a great need to get involved, whether it is through volunteering, donating time or other resources.

The Men’s Room provides a mentoring service called ‘Bridge Builders’ for young males who are primarily from poor socio-economic backgrounds. Our aim is to help equip these young men with the skills to help them out of poverty by providing them with mentors from professional backgrounds to help them begin to achieve their potential.  For a detailed information pack about the scheme, please click here:

Our team of mentors are able to provide support in areas such as, reducing youth crime and antisocial behaviour, dealing with anger, helping individuals to learn etiquette and good manners and working with groups to reduce tensions and conflict.  A mentor’s role can require many different things depending on the individual that they are mentoring. It could involve helping someone with their educational needs, assisting them to find employment or developing in a particular career. The person may need to develop certain skills or build confidence and general self-esteem. With the wide spectrum of needs that these young men have, mentors from all backgrounds are able to offer something.

 Volunteer

 Why should you become a mentor?

Everyone knows the saying “If I only knew then what I know now”. Well why not teach ‘what you know now’ to someone else?  Mentoring is one of the most satisfying and rewarding experiences you can have. Mentoring gives you the opportunity to help shape a young person’s future for the better by empowering him or her to achieve their full potential;

  • By mentoring someone you may help them to discover gifts and talents they didn’t realise that they had
  • By highlighting their strengths you not only help them to understand their ability but also boost their self-confidence, self-belief and self-worth
  • By investing in a person’s future you also invest in the future of their community

Mentoring is about sharing your skills, knowledge and experience with others. If you have skills and wisdom to share, then there is always someone who will benefit from them.

By mentoring a young man you give him individual a positive influence to base some of his life decisions on. Many young men don’t have adult males or females in their lives who bring about a positive influence. By showing these young people how you have utilised your professional skills and made the most out of the opportunities you have been given, you are essentially providing these young men with a positive role model in their lives who can offer guidelines and advice on life.

Mentoring is a chance for you to ‘give something back’. In the past you may have received some sort of mentoring or guidance from an experienced professional or maybe you needed a mentor but there was no one willing to supply you with the guidance that you needed. Now that you have the knowledge, wisdom and life experience to advise someone else why not put it to good use through.

Taking timeout from your busy schedule to talk to a young man, share your life experiences with him and listen to the goals and ambitions he has in life has to be one of the least expensive, but most powerful ways to influence his life community around him.

We approach potential mentors based on the contribution they have already made to society.

 Who do we mentor?

Our main target group is young men between the ages of 12 and 30 from poor socio economic or troubled backgrounds. This could mean helping these young men with anything from encouraging them to achieve educational success and remain in school, guiding them in achieving any career goals that they might have or maybe supporting them in being better parents.  The large amount of young males failing to reach their full potential is having a negative effect on the economy. We believe that through mentoring we can help to reduce this impact. Our aim is to influence these young men to become positive role models themselves to impact on their friends and the society around them.