Lottery windfall helps mentoring project expand

Stephanie Burras of Leeds Ahead on the streets of Holbeck.
Stephanie Burras of Leeds Ahead on the streets of Holbeck.
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A SCHEME which sees top business professionals mentoring school pupils is set to reach 15,000 young people around Yorkshire this year after getting £1m Lottery funding to expand.

The Make the Grade initiative started in Leeds with four secondary schools and their feeder primary schools.

The idea was to bring together businesses in the city to help support schools and then tailor what they could provide to the needs of inner city schools.

The project is run by the Ahead Partnership, a social enterprise set up by former lawyer Stephanie Burras (pictured). Two years ago it was praised by Lord Heseltine in a report about securing economic growth.

Last year alone, its work helped to support more than 7,500 young people across 40 schools.

Make the Grade’s programme manager Sophie Nesworthy said: “We’re delighted with the growth of Make the Grade and to see the numbers of young people and businesses involved go from strength to strength is very important to us.”

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