As a Business Guide who took part in the Croydon “Be the Change Day” at Crystal Palace FC on 22nd September, I have to say that it was a privilege not only to work with other volunteers and teams at LoveCroydonJobs.com and Humanutopia, but also the youngsters who had been chosen by their schools to take part in the event.
The day began with a mixture of fun activities that encouraged the students to identify their own self-image and the persona that they portray to others. They were then invited to stand up and describe the barriers that hold them back in life – this was a truly emotional moment with only a handful of students taking part initially and then gradually more and more 13-14 year-olds stood up to take the microphone in front of over 150 people, including 9 different schools – incredibly brave for their age.
During that time, these young adults showed their peers nothing but respect – the claps and cheers after each “show and tell” were deafening. It’s true to say that these disengaged teens really did put their lives on hold for a day and, at the end of the event, shone out as very capable, smart and enthusiastic members of society.
LoveCroydonJobs.com are hoping to secure further funding so that these remarkable students can progress through all the levels of the self-change programme to realise their full potential and become Croydon’s workforce of the future. I will most certainly be volunteering to support them to the end of their journey.
Feyley Barnham, Business Development Executive
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