The ‘#BeYou Summit’ celebrates trust

After a year of mentorship by Girls’ Network, an award-winning national charity that supports young women aged 14-19, nearly 150 girls from local Sussex schools came together for the first #BeYou event at PlusX in Brighton.

The national “#BeYou Summit” featured inspirational speakers and workshops designed to help young women “Be Bold, Brave, Be Heard, Be You!” »

To celebrate this special day marking the end of their journey, local poet and artist Cerys Evans opened the event and took part in a Q&A session with attendees and AFLO the poet.

Fifteen-year-old Olivia took part in the program and said, “All over the world, girls don’t see their potential and lack guidance. Mentoring has helped me by giving me a model and a guide to move forward in my career path. The support really boosted my confidence, and I felt like I knew more about my future and felt a lot more confident.

The Girls’ Network has been operating in Sussex since 2015 and works with many secondary schools in Brighton, Shoreham and Eastbourne. For students, they do this by pairing them with a mentor, connecting them with inspirational speakers, and providing a program of events and activities to build their confidence and life skills.

At the end of the 12-month program, mentees are invited to join the Ambassador Community: an ongoing network of young women with access to work experience, workshops and events that can provide them with skills and help them improve. their future.

Role models

Charly YoungCEO and Co-Founder of Girls’ Network, said, “Our network provides girls and young women with many role models and opportunities to achieve their ambitions.

“Thanks to Enterprise’s generous support, we can help many more young women discover their skills, gain confidence and shape their future.”

This year’s inaugural event was sponsored by Rent-A-Car, one of The Times’ 50 Best Companies for Women. Enterprise Rent-A-Car announced its £250,000 donation over five years to the Girls’ Network earlier this year.

The donation is part of Enterprise’s ROAD Forward (Respect, Opportunity, Achievement, Diversity) program, a $55 million commitment to open new doors for those disproportionately impacted by lack of access to life skills resources. education, health and welfare.

Jennifer Koontz, chair of Enterprise Rent-A-Car’s Enterprising Women Gender Diversity Group and chair of the company’s UK Cultural Compass committee, which sets DEI strategy, added: equity and inclusion are part of our guiding principles and ‘compass culture’, which informs all of our business decisions at Enterprise. #BeYou’ is a fantastic initiative that has had a huge impact on the girls who took part. We’re thrilled to help young women thrive with The Girls’ Network.

More autonomous

The Girls’ Network organizes training sessions in August/September for women with more than three years of professional experience who wish to become mentors. Many women across Sussex have already signed up to become volunteer mentors for the Girls’ Network, helping girls develop their ambitions and envision their future careers.

A current mentor, Jacqui Greenrecalled, “Mentoring is about giving your mentee a toolkit of life skills that will empower them to be more empowered and fulfill their potential. It’s not about telling someone to do something. something in a way; it’s about coaching someone and sharing whatever you can know to help them on their journey.

If you want to know more, visit their website here.

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