New mentoring programme offering support to local charities and community groups

25th February 2022

Leaders across South Yorkshire have joined a new mentorship programme launched by South Yorkshire’s Community Foundation (SYCF), to provide strategic level support to local community groups after a challenging two years due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

South Yorkshire Charity Mentors (SYCM) will allow an experienced professional to come onboard with a community group to deliver short-term help between three to four months, sharing their knowledge and expertise to people who are on the search for extra guidance.

Potential mentees can register their interest on the SYCM website, allowing the Executive Co-ordinator of SYCM, to align a suitable match with a mentor. The mentoring relationship would begin after an introduction was facilitated by SYCM.

The programme originated after SYCF undertook a South Yorkshire Community Sector Resilience Survey in 2020 asking community organisations how they have responded to the Covid-19 crisis, and how it has impacted them.

Covid-19 resulted in a huge demand for services provided by community groups, who reported financial shortfalls with the added challenge of existing volunteers being unable to offer their time.  Alongside grant funding provided by SYCF, there was an opportunity to further support them with invaluable, free mentoring advice to cover the impact of any changes during the pandemic.

Martin Singer, SYCM Executive Co-ordinator said: “It has been amazing to see the response of business leaders in our region keen to get involved and give back to communities by sharing their vast knowledge to community group leaders. This is supported by the wealth of experience on our Advisory Board, who are keen to make these placements a mutually beneficial experience”.

The scope of the mentoring relationship would be decided between both parties with SYCM maintaining contact with the mentor and mentee, completing a qualitative review at the end of the agreement. 

SYCF Chief Executive Ruth Willis said: “In the last two years, community groups have gone above and beyond to support our communities during the Covid-19 pandemic. Financial support does help but to have a mentor that could give advice, can prove just as impactful to continue, progress and develop their projects.” 

Potential mentors and mentees are encouraged to visit the SYCM website for more information at: https://www.sycf.org.uk/sycm-home/ and there is also a LinkedIn page for news and updates: https://www.linkedin.com/showcase/sycharitymentors 

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