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Rome Reports

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Citywise: providing support to families in the poorest neighborhoods of the UK

 Citywise is a charitable organization focused on providing a personalized program for children living in “some of the poorest neighborhoods of the UK.”

For this organization, it is important young people are able to flourish and make a positive contribution to society. 

This is especially urgent, as according to Citywise, the Institute of Fiscal Studies predict the number of children living in poverty will rise sharply by 2020.

Chief Executive, Citywise

“We offer support to staff and headteachers, in doing what all teachers want for young people. This is to help them grow as rounded and confident individuals.” FLASH 00:48-01:04. ”Our mentors come in and work closely with teachers to help support the child in needs they know are specific for that child. Whether that is coming from a difficult family home or struggling with resilience in the classroom.”

They run activities and set personal goals for students all centered around building four key character traits: resilience, self-control, good judgment and fairness.

They have recently been awarded a prestigious grant from the Greater Good Science Center at the University of California. They hope now to develop more programs to help support families.

Chief Executive, Citywise

“We have been able to hire a family worker, who will be developing work alongside our existing school program. This is to help parents in their important jobs as children's primary educators.”

However, it is not only schools and families that are benefiting from these programs; but also the mentors. 

They are volunteers, many of them university students and young professionals, acting as role models for these youngsters.

Chief Executive, Citywise

“We really believe that it is through giving that you really receive.” “They have chosen to define part of their lives by coming along every week; and doing something completely for another person, who can never repay them. This is something very precious.”

This year is Citywise's 25th anniversary. They hope to continue in supporting families living at a disadvantage; and with few opportunities available to help them progress in life.