Chances F2F

We have summarised some of our learning in the form of “top tips” for those wishing to run these sessions face to face, particularly with NEET girls (although we believe this approach would benefit any cohort)

Top Tips

  1. If possible, arrange some sort of “open day” before running the main course. By inviting the girls to our centre before the sessions began
    1. The girls met staff in an informal context, where no expectations were being placed on them, which helped in the beginning of relationship forming
    2. The girls felt more of a sense of ownership over the space
  2. Include those signed up for the course in the wider world of your organisation. This may not always be possible, but we found being able to offer recreational/creative groups in addition to the Chances course provided wraparound support and helped the girls feel more secure in the sessions they attended
  3. Girls and staff reported that the gender-specific space meant fewer arguments; one participant spoke of it being more difficult to stay calm in school, as boys and girls would wind each other up.
  4. Ask “what would you like to happen if you get angry?” at the outset, and talk about triggers and strategies in a calm and respectful way. Make sure the room is arranged so as to provide girls with an “escape route”, so they don’t feel trapped when they are agitated and the situation doesn’t escalate.
  5. An initial group agreement is an important document, and the girls should co-produce it. It is particularly important to discuss confidentiality, safeguarding and the “right to pass” – girls should be very clear that it is a safe space and be encouraged to be themselves, but not feel pressured to share if not comfortable and to know the potential result if they disclose abuse or you otherwise fear for their safety.

We’ve brought together the best of our sessions into the following list:

  • Dealing With Anger & Stress
  • Assertiveness
  • Barriers To Education
  • Body Image
  • Communication & Listening
  • Future Goals
  • Healthy Relationships
  • Job Applications
  • Lifestyle & Physical Health
  • Mental Health
  • Nutrition & Food Hygiene
  • Self-Esteem & Confidence

Each session is modular, comprised of between 2 and 4 45 minute blocks. This allows you to decide on your own breaks, choose the blocks which work best with your young women and even combine blocks from complementary sessions.

We encourage session facilitators to combine topics to produce the series most relevant to their cohort, and to include the young women in this decision making process as much as possible. In the past we have run selections geared more towards future planning and life-skills, and others focused on confidence! We’d love to hear from you in the comments which combinations work best for you.


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