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24th Feb 2017

Re-engaging 14 and 15-year-old students who are at risk of leaving school without further education, employment or training placements can be a tough task.  But an innovative social enterprise project called Energise is proving that intensive and structured support delivered at the right time reduces the risks and turns lives around.

Energise is developed and managed by Thames Valley charity Adviza. It focuses on Improving attitudes, attendance and behaviour at school with a knock-on effect of better GCSE results.  It was originally funded by the Innovation Fund (DWP) in 2012 and since then has supported 1,778 young people, delivering over 20,000 hours of support, including 49 residentials and over 150 individual activity days.  When the original funding came to an end in March 2015, Adviza was eager to continue a programme that had such a positive impact. 

Adviza fundraised for the project to continue across Berkshire with grants received from Berkshire Community Foundation; The Blagrave Trust and Bracknell Forest Homes.  Additional funding from The Blagrave Trust was granted this month to ensure the project can continue into 2017.  Schools were previously required to make a small contribution, however as this excluded participation from some schools, Adviza has secured additional funding to subsidise the full costs.  A successful award from the Big Lottery as part of the Building Better Opportunities Fund, will also ensure the project can be delivered across Berkshire to young people in need.

Adviza works with schools across the Thames Valley to identify students who are eligible for the programme.  Each student is appointed a 1:1 keyworker who provides mentoring combined with structured activity days and residential courses designed to foster re-engagement with school.  This helps build the student’s self-esteem and improves their interpersonal skills and is delivered over a period of five months.

Adviza has achieved impressive results from its Energise project and a huge impact on those taking part, which is backed up by both the young people involved and the school staff. “This project is really good for people who need help in school.  I’m so glad I got picked”, young person on Energise.  “An amazing project which has really enabled pupils to develop independently from school, with some amazing staff who give continuous support,” Head Teacher.

For further information about Energise please contact Lee Teideman, Delivery Manager, Energise on 07747 760882

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