Reigniting a childhood passion to brighten other childhoods

On Sunday 31 July, Edd Hopkinson will take part in RideLondon, cycling 100 miles through London and Surrey to raise money for Friendship Works. Here, he explains why he’s doing it. “When I was a kid I used to ride my bike as much as I could. If I wasn’t at school or asleep I’d be off exploring on two wheels, searching out new places to ride and having fun…
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Bella’s story

About all the outings she goes on with her mentor So when we first met what happened was Neil asked me questions about Stephanie. He asked me “would you like a girl or a boy for the mentor”. I said “I want a girl” and he said “what kind of girl do you want?” I said a funny one. Me and Stephanie went to explore the world in London! My favourite place was…
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Stephanie’s Story

On Friendship, exploring London and what it’s like to be a Friendship Works mentor I’ve been a mentor to Bella for about a year now. She was 6 when I met her, and living with her aunt in London, because neither of her parents are able to look after her full time. Bella wanted a mentor who was “kind and funny”. She had experienced many more unsettling disruptions than most…
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How to #BeAFriend to a young person with autism

Victoria Mitchell, a student social worker training at Brunel University, was on placement at Friendship Works for six months. During her time here, she spent some time researching autism and how to befriend and support a child affected by it. We are sharing her findings as part of our #BeAFriend campaign. This blog presents the reader with a guide on how to befriend a person with autism and to make…
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Mentors encourage creativity

This blog entry was written by Celina, who has been a caseworker with Friendship Works for four years.  As a caseworker at Friendship Works I support a budding friendship between Zachary and Amanda, who have known each other for 4 months now. Zachary is 14 years old and is a really creative young man. During his time with Amanda he has been able to explore his creative side in a…
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Building a strong board of trustees

In his final blog for Trustee’s Week, Friendship Works Chair George Dunnett focuses on board recruitment and the importance of getting the right mix of skills. Iain, our CEO, has helpfully reminded me today that one of my actions from the last board meeting was to consider what skills we need to add to the board during our next trustee recruitment round. I am emailing Jane (our Vice-Chair) and Jo…
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Raising funds for Friendship Works

In the second of his blogs for Trustee’s Week, our Chair George Dunnett reflects on how a board can meet the challenges of fundraising for their charity. In the US, fundraising is a much more explicit part of a charity board’s role than it is here. Culturally in the UK we are usually much less comfortable talking about money. I share that reticence and find it quite embarrassing to discuss…
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What is it like to be a trustee of Friendship Works?

Trustee’s Week runs from 4 – 10 November. It is a national campaign highlighting the role of trustees in charities. We thought this would be the ideal time for George Dunnett, our Chair of Trustees, to give a little insight into what it’s like to be a trustee for Friendship Works. Here is the first of his posts this week. This is a busy week for me as Chair of…
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MENtors wanted…

‘There has never been a greater need for alternative male role models.’ This statement was made during last Thursday’s ‘Tonight’ programme, ‘Kids without Dads’ which explored claims made in a report by the Centre for Social Justice (the think tank established by Iain Duncan Smith) that an increasing number of children in the UK are growing up without contact with their fathers. The programme introduced us to single mothers, including…
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Five reasons to become a mentor in Camden

We know thirty-two children in Camden who need a mentor, and more are being referred to us each month. If you know someone who lives in borough, who you believe would make a great mentor, why not encourage them to sign up for one of our orientation evenings to find out more about what mentoring involves. There are loads of great reasons to mentor a child in Camden – here…
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