The Raheem Sterling Foundation has partnered with Promise Foundation to deliver a 12-month mentorship programme to students at Ark Elvin Academy in Brent, London.

Promise Foundation is a charity that provides young people with a mentoring relationship that unlocks their unique potential through one-to-one support. The mentors help to increase self esteem, motivation and confidence, help develop a wider understanding of career options, encourage a positive mental attitude and improve interpersonal skills such as negotiating and listening.

Over the last year, Promise Foundation has seen 89% of students under their mentorship programme make progress in at least two core subjects and teachers have reports that 94% of mentees have made an impressive improvement in their English, followed by Science (73%) and Maths (66%).

Outside of the classroom, 77% of young people feel more confident having a mentor and 83% attending the sessions say it has had a positive impact on their self esteem. [1]

The programme at Ark Elvin, funded by the Raheem Sterling Foundation, has appointed 10 professionals from a range of different backgrounds in sport, tech and the public sector, guide 10 students over the next year.

The mentors and mentees met for the first time in March at the school, where co- founder of Promise Foundation, Promise Knight and Raheem’s lifelong mentor and Chair of his foundation Clive Ellington attended to introduce the programme.

Mentorship has been a vital part of Raheem’s life and Clive has been by his side since his days at Ark Elvin Academy, supporting him on and off the pitch.

Commenting on the partnership, Clive Ellington said,

“The aim for mentoring is to provide hope, opportunities, creativity but also change future generations. It’s important to look at where a young person is and where they want to be –mentors aren’t just role models, they are goal models.”

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“it allows us to understand the world the mentee is operating in – how they think and feel and what contributes to that. It could be their home setting or factors in society. It’s a two-way relationship that give mentors the opportunity to learn about the every changing world of our young people and the mentee a chance to be honest and open about their thoughts and feelings.”

“This partnership will offer young people, as it did Raheem, better life choices and thrive, but also support in achieving their dreams and goals in everyday life – not just in a school setting but in everyday society.”

Based in Brent, The Promise Foundation was inspired by Co-Founder Promise Knight who, through her own mentor journey, wanted to give young people the opportunity to learn vital life lessons and skills.

Commenting on the partnership, Promise said,

“Mentoring is so fundamentally important. It’s a lifeline. There is a direct link between the acceptance, advice and support that I received from my mentor that has made me who I am today.”

“Raheem’s vision for better social mobility chimes with ours. Promise Foundation is about enabling young people to reach their goals, transform their lives and broaden their horizons. Communities have to come together and become responsible for the delivery of social mobility, as the Raheem Sterling Foundation does. Essential programmes like mentorships would not be possible without its support.”

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The Raheem Sterling Foundation and The Promise Foundation will work closely with Ark Elvin Academy to follow all of the individual journeys.

Tommy Ittu, Vice Principal at Ark Elvin said,

“The mentorship programme delivered by the Raheem Sterling Foundation and the Promise Foundation will provide the opportunity for a mentor to sit down and speak with a mentee for one hour a week – someone who relates to them, sounds like them, has the same experiences as them and come out the other side successful.”

“The students who have been selected to take part are very intelligent and ambitious but for reasons of no fault of their own are falling behind. We are hoping this opportunity will unlock their capabilities, allow them to express their feelings and give the school the extra support it needs to empower our young people.”

Students taking part in the mentorship shared their hopes ahead of the programme –

“I am taking part in the mentorship scheme because I will find it helpful to have someone to talk to someone and learn about different career options”

Edi, 15, Year 10

“I feel the mentorship will motivate me for the things I want to achieve in the future. I would like advice on what sectors I could work in”

Hamsa, 14, Year 10