On Tuesday, 4th April, Reach Society once again showcased talent in the Black community in its 7th Careers Conference. The climax of the day was the announcement of the second full scholarship for a British young man of Caribbean background seeking entry to Brunel University London in September 2018; and the new summer internship at Grace Foods for a British young woman, of the same background, who is studying at Brunel University.
Young people, aged 14 to16, in Wolverhampton and nearby areas, and their parents and carers, had the opportunity to gain invaluable information, advice and guidance from roughly two dozen professionals, from the local Black community, and a similar number of local employers at the Employability Day held on 22 February, in the iconic Molineux stadium.
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To celebrate its milestone of 5 years of service to the community, Reach Society has published a new book. It tells the story of its origins and the work it has done to develop solutions to some key challenges on its way to proving its concept for inspiring young people to develop their potential to become viable adults, especially Black boys and young Black men.
The story of Reach Society tells us how three professional Black men, all fathers, decided to do what the government stopped doing, after less than two years of funding the national role model programme. It tells us how they went about founding Reach Society around a team of seven professional men all of whom are passionate about reaching back.
The book tells us how this team chose to avoid any reliance on grant funding for their project, preferring to take action to generate the necessary funds by commercial means. In so doing they were able to achieve their social objectives while retaining their independence to evolve the project.
It tells us how a growing movement of professional Black men is willingly reaching back every year to encourage, motivate and inspire several hundred young people to choose pathways to success.
The story of Reach Society tells us of the relationships which the team has forged with many employers in the private and public sectors, and with voluntary organisations. In so doing it has rolled out inspirational events, year after year; showcased dozens of professional Black men to young people; and increased their access to employers and experts in many fields. Also it tells us of the use of the Perfect 10 Workshops to reveal secrets for self development and future success.
This book shows us how reaching back with passion, compassion and thoughtful action, by a few professional men, can make a significant difference in the lives of many thousands of young people in the Black community, and beyond.
The authors are Dr Dwain Neil and Paula Neil.