“My mentor has helped me to build my confidence, choose the right ways and to believe in myself. She has helped me so much”.
– Chloe, Greenwich

  • Mentoring is a key element of our work at XLP. It is simple but highly effective way of engaging with young people who are struggling in life for a variety of reasons.
  • Mentoring helps young vulnerable young people to improve their life skills, avoid educational failure and relate positively to their peers and communities and choose alternatives to gang culture.

In 2008 XLP started the XL-Mentoring Project, which focuses on at-risk young people aged 11-18 who are on the verge of exclusion or have been excluded from school, and/or are at risk of involvement or already involved in gangs, crime and anti-social behaviour. They are referred to the project by schools, pupil referral units, youth services or the police.

XLP recruits, trains, monitors and supervises mentors who live and can invest in young people in their local community. They are then matched with a referred young person and commit to providing two hours of face-to-face time each week for a minimum of 12 months. A full-time experienced coordinator for each borough manages up to 25 active mentoring relationships and supports the mentors, mentees and the mentees’ family throughout the process, something that is particularly needed in the early months for the relationship to last.

The project has proven highly effective in supporting young people who are facing emotional, behavioural and relational challenges. It has been deployed successfully in Southwark, Lewisham and Tower Hamlets. The outcomes have been exceptionally good with over 70% of beneficiaries having higher attendance levels in school and doing well after 12 months with a mentor.

The stories of lives changed through this project are truly amazing. Check out 'Young People's Stories' for more on what a significant and lasting difference mentoring can make to a young person’s life – not just now, but to their entire future, as well as the futures of many others through them.

To get involved in our London Mentoring, become a mentor, or to find out more about our National Mentoring Training ‘Get In Touch

XLP is extremely grateful for the support of a number of grant-making trusts that currently fund this project, including: Big Lottery Fund, The Henry Smith Charity and Soul Action.