St Dunstan’s College to help local minority groups develop leadership skills

The south London independent school has co-founded the Lewisham Young Leaders Academy, which aims to help minority groups in the area develop leadership skills

An independent school in south London is part of a new initiative aiming to benefit minority groups in the local community.

St Dunstan’s College has co-founded the Lewisham Young Leaders Academy (LYLA) in conjunction with Lewisham Council and Westside Young Leaders Academy (WYLA).

The project is a response to evidence highlighting the disparity in outcomes for black Caribbean and dual heritage (black Caribbean/white) children and young people throughout the UK.

Participants referred by their school or other agencies connected to the programme will be offered help with learning such life skills as leadership, teamwork, presentation skills and CV building. The Saturday morning sessions will be modelled on those practiced by WYLA, which has already enjoyed success in west London.

Lewisham Council is funding the project, whilst St Dunstan’s College will be providing free use of its facilities.

“We can see the enormous benefit of being more deeply embedded within the community of Lewisham, and the impact WYLA has already had on countless young people is phenomenal,” said Nicholas Hewlett, head of St Dunstan’s College.

“We look forward to learning from our partners about the important work we are undertaking and how it can be developed in the future.

“This project has enormous potential for growth and development, and we look forward to trailblazing how private schools can have genuine educational impact on the broader community in which they are based, particularly for minority groups who are in specific need of targeted support.”

A spokesperson for LYLA said: “We are excited to offer the young people of the borough some of the very best tried and tested leadership programmes and experiences. This partnership will provide the newly enrolled young leaders with new challenges and opportunities which will aid their development into the next generation of leaders.”

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