Charity gives hope to NEETs

An initiative aimed at teaching young people that have slipped through the education system has been able to continue throughout Covid-19 thanks to a grant from the Steve Morgan Foundation.

Power in Partnership (PiP) helps people in Runcorn and Widnes deemed as NEET, which stands for not in education employment or training.

Many of the young people they work with have an added learning need and require one-to-one supervision.

Claire Bradbury is the CEO of Power in Partnership and explained: “The young people we help don’t go to schools or colleges and have slipped through the cracks.

“It could because of a family breakdown or that one of their parents has a drug or alcohol problem.  There’s usually several reasons why they don’t engage with the education system, which is where we come in.”

The charity, which was founded in 2011, employs fully qualified teachers but had to change the way it worked because of Covid-19.

“Because of the rules on social distancing we had to stop our face-to-face work,” said Claire. “We literally switched to an online platform over the weekend. 

“We set up a virtual classroom for each student so they could carry on studying while a skeleton staff of four delivered emergency food packs and bursary to the young people who were in hardship. 

“We’ve currently got a cohort of 120 young people and all but three of them have stayed in touch throughout the pandemic. “One of biggest concerns was that Covid-19 would adversely affect young people mentally. Thanks to the £7,200 grant we’ve received from the Steve Morgan Foundation we’ve been able stay in touch daily with the students to encourage wellbeing.

“I think there will be a positive legacy to come from this. I would never have imagined we could have set up a virtual classroom but going forward I think we’ll have a blending learning model when we come back. Steve Morgan’s support has made a big difference and we’re very grateful.”

 Steve Morgan, of the Steve Morgan Foundation, said: “It’s so important that charities have been able to continue offering a service throughout Covid-19, even if the delivery model has to change. Power in Partnership is a really good example of going from a face-to-face system to creating a virtual classroom literally overnight. Well done to them.” 

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