Liverpool’s network manager for the Girls Network, Amy Campo McEvoy, visited LSTM to talk about the charity and how to get involved. The Girls Network first started in 2013 in London and across the South coast of England, since then it has expanded to Newcastle, Manchester, the West Midlands and Liverpool.
The charity aims to inspire and empower young women particularly from disadvantaged backgrounds through mentorship. Realising that school girls lacked the confidence held by their male counterparts, two secondary school teachers in London started the charity to encourage girls to challenge stereotypes and expectations of women in the workplace.
The one-to-one mentoring scheme, requests just one hour every month over the course of a year, during which the mentor works towards building confidence, developing keys skills and opening networks for the mentee. This minimal time-commitment from mentor has proven extremely beneficial to the mentees, with 100% of girls on the programme having reported feeling more confident about their career paths. Teachers have also noted 89% of girls in the program show more resilience and self-motivation by the end of the year.
The Girls’ Network Liverpool branch was set up this summer with a cohort of 13 mentoring girls from Holly Lodge Girl’s College. Already they are looking to expand their program to other schools in Liverpool and the Wirral, and recruit as many voluntary mentors as possible, to ensure that every girl who needs a mentor gets one. It doesn’t matter what background the mentor has, it could be in in finance, administration or any level within acadaemia. The Girl’s Network provides useful online resources to support mentors and they also provide a platform which enable mentors to communicate with each other for further support.
LSTM’s Vera Unwin and Victoria Austin have been mentoring with the charity since October. Vera commented: “Mentoring has helped me build self-confidence and develop my communication skills. It’s also made me appreciate how lucky I am to work in the field I work in, which has really boosted my motivation at work. The energy the girls have is amazing and it’s contagious!” Victoria added: “Working with my mentee has been very rewarding, I am already seeing her confidence grow and I'm looking forward to seeing what she will achieve over the rest of the year.”
To sign up to be a mentor, visit this site.