Supporting the Most Vulnerable

Supporting the most vulnerable

Mentoring through Doncaster Children’s Services Trust (DCST)

This has been funded by the Doncaster Opportunity Area. All schools are eligible for this support.

DCST have recruited over 100 volunteer mentors from a wide range of professional backgrounds including the education and health sectors and the wider public sector, as well as university and college students and people from businesses across Doncaster.

Mentors will work from the lifelong links model and will be aligned with a child or young person for at least two years. We are targeting those children and young people who are struggling, or may struggle, with the transition from primary to secondary education.

For more information contact Cheryl Blackett – or

National Citizenship Service (NCS)

This has been funded by the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government. Secondary schools are eligible for support from the NCS Trust and some vulnerable pupils may be able to access the programme for free.

NCS supports the development of the 16-17 year olds who take part in NCS over the Summer in terms of confidence, teamwork, leadership and has been shown to positively influence university destinations amongst those from the lowest socio-economic backgrounds. NCS can also support the DfE’s FIve Foundations of Character. Furthermore, evidence of strong engagement with NCS can be used to show how schools are meeting the proposed ‘Personal Development’ judgement under the new Ofsted framework due to come into play in September 2019.

To see how your school could get involved contact Jan Budtz at

Franklin Scholars Programme

Franklin Scholars programme is an in-school peer mentoring programme that recruits and trains older students to provide a year-long programme of mentoring and literacy support to younger students experiencing challenges in school, be they academic or socio-emotional. They have worked with over 3,000 students in 50 schools and colleges across England.

More information about the programme (with literacy and numeracy focus areas), their impact, and what the students think can be found on their website.

As Franklin Scholars looks to scale up, they have received donor funding that allows them to work with schools in Category 5 and 6 areas, which includes Doncaster, at a 20% reduced rate for the 19/20 school year.

Interested in finding out more information? Fill out this contact form on our website.

Evolve Health Mentors

Evolve enables children to achieve their potential by improving their physical, emotional and cognitive health and well being. It does this by recruiting, training and supporting its workforce of Health Mentors who are placed in schools to work with the most vulnerable children. Evolve has won multiple awards for its work and has developed a strong evidence base for its effectiveness. 

We are trialling Evolve’s Health Mentors in six schools during 2019/20. As well as showcasing an important intervention that addresses a number of strategic priority areas, this project will also be a source of best practice for Doncaster schools that have teaching support staff enrolled on the Health Mentor Training Programme as part of their workforce development strategy.

Visit their website here.

The Youth Association – Dobre Girls

‘Dobre Girls’ is a developmental project that improves the confidence, aspirations and prospects of a young Roma women, with a view to reducing the currently very high rate of exclusion. The work is entirely focused on reducing barriers for Roma girls, enabling them to grow their ambitions in a safe space.

The programme covers a series of developmental areas, including:

  • Speaking with confidence
  • Developing self-awareness
  • Meeting female role models
  • Creative arts
  • Exploring cultural identity
  • Exploring education values

‘Dobre Girls’ is delivered to groups, creating cooperative learning environments that enhance impact. Highly experienced female youth workers deliver this programme of informal education in the Hexthorpe and Balby. The key priority is to contribute to the reduction of exclusion levels among this group by offering an inspiring and relevant curriculum of informal educational activities.

Parentkind – Parental Engagement

Parentkind is looking for a number of schools to take part in an innovative joint project with Doncaster Council and Doncaster Opportunity Area to help schools improve their parental engagement. They will undertake an initial audit with each school, based on the latest evidence collated in Parentkind’s blueprint for parent friendly schools and develop practical strategies tailored to each school to overcome barriers to positive participation and encourage parents and carers to be more involved in their child’s learning.

The aim of this project is to help schools to create parental engagement strategies that can be seamlessly embedded within the teaching and non-teaching staff school day to improve attendance and reduce exclusions.

Raising Aspirations

DEBP are a Social Enterprise specialising in supporting the aspirational decision making of young people to shape their future. They do this by introducing them to people and experiences which are aspirational, inspirational, challenging and fun. They reflect the national and local educational and economic priorities in all of our activities in schools and Learning Communities. They do this by working closely with LEPs, Chambers of Commerce, Local Authorities, STEM Institutes and Societies, the Career & Enterprise Company and local employers.

The INspire programme supports schools to engage their young people, teachers, parents and the community in local, curriculum centred careers delivery; resulting in at least 2 facilitated employer interactions for every young person in the targeted year groups.   DEBP support the school to develop a community network of trained, DBS checked volunteers, lead by an identified community champion.  Teachers are supported with 4 CPLD sessions, focussed on employer engagement and labour market information, reinforced by regular teach meets with the other participating schools. 


National Literacy Trust

The National Literacy Trust aims to deliver a town-wide media campaign to raise awareness of literacy and promote good literacy practices. They will engage with 45 primary schools via a Literacy Pledge, membership of the National Literacy Trust and supporting literacy focused activities and Professional Development. They will engage key organisations, community groups and through recruiting and supporting local Literacy Champions (volunteers) they will promote literacy and offer family literacy activities in the community.

Schools can get in touch by emailing: