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  • Writer's pictureBeth Nunn

Building communication at Chorlton

On 10th January we were excited to relaunch our BUILD programme at Chorlton High School, working with young people to BUILD skills and experiences to help them prepare for their future.

The BUILD programme was first developed in 2021 with funding from the Youth Endowment Fund to help support young people returning to school following the schools closures during the pandemic. Run in collaboration with Bounceback Education and, BUILD focussed on five different units: Engagement, Motivation, Resilience, Team Work, Careers and Learning Toolkit. Different aspects of the programme were piloted in Co-Op Walkden Academy, MEA Central and Manchester Communication Academy during the 20/21 academic year, both using in person delivery and online learning resources.

We have taken aspects of the BUILD programme to develop a bespoke programme for Year 11 students at Chorlton High School, all of whom have arrived in the UK over the past year seeking refuge and asylum. The group from across the globe have a range of different backgrounds and languages, and the aim of this new project is to help them become more confident and familiar with their new city, and develop key skills focussed on during the programme to help them transition to college successfully.

So far during the programme, students have developed their team work and communication skills through different group activities, explored their goals and aspirations through vision board activities and considered what their own personal strengths are for the future.

As well as classroom based sessions, we also will be taking the group out and about regularly to develop confidence with their local area and introduce them to future opportunities. All these activities will also be designed to help develop their confidence and communication skills (including developing their English).

We had our first visit out on Tuesday 31st January, when we travelled by Metrolink to local school Pioneer House, when post 16 learners planned and delivered a cafe experience for the group, complete with a specially prepared menu to suit dietary requirements, and games for them to play during their visit. As well as being a great learning experience for both groups, it was a great way to bring students from two schools within the Prospere Learning Trust together. Students enjoyed getting to know each other, and practicing their English in a safe environment.

This week the group went on a visit to Manchester central library, students also had their first ever trip to Greggs as a treat! We had a tour, saw an 800 year old book and spent time exploring the community language library where there were books in all the students first languages.

After half term, they will be looking at developing a social action project, and planning and running community events within school.

This programme is currently being run with support from We Love MCR Charity. If you would like to support this programme, or find out more about running the BUILD programme in your school or community group, please get in touch.

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