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  • The charity has been developed, following the tragic death of Ashdon Muirhead who ended her own life at just the age of 14 years. As a teenager Ashdon struggled with peer pressure, relational complexity at school and feeling confident about being herself in a society that pressurizes young women to be and act a certain way. Many young women struggle with relational and aspirational deprivation, in a growing world were youth are encouraged to develop relationships via the virtual ICT world. Many young women seek verification and affirmation from social media which leaves them vulnerable and exposed to a harsh and an unfriendly virtual world.

     

    The charity aims to provide vulnerable young women who may be suffering from self esteem issues, feelings of isolation, peer pressure, relational bullying, family breakdowns, stress and anxiety, involvement in criminality and gangs and those who may be at risk of exclusion; with a mentor.

     

    We work with girls between the ages of 11-16 and living in the Merton, Lambeth and Croydon areas. By working in youth clubs, schools and other youth organisation we are able to match a female who has been referred or who have themselves asked for help, with a female mentor. The mentor’s main role is to be a friend and someone the young female is able to trust and share their worries and concerns with.

  • What makes AJA mentoring different?

     

    • AJA mentoring meetings are conducted in a neutral and familiar setting where the female teenager and her mentor decide. The park, a fast food outlet or places of interest for e.g.

     

    • Mentee gatherings will ensure all female teenagers on the programme; have the opportunity to build further and new friendships in a comfortable and secure environment.

     

    • All AJA mentors are trained using the XLP mentoring model. Further mentor training is conducted throughout the year developing mentors further in their role

     

    • Mentor network meetings will ensure all volunteer mentors feel supported and where good practice can be shared           

     

    • AJA mentors do not view their role, as being a parent, counselor, rescuer, social worker or other authority figure. An AJA mentor’s fundamental role is to be a friend.