How to empower the business community to level the playing field for our young people

August 9, 2022
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This is a unique opportunity for the UK's business leaders to help level the playing field for our young people. By committing to the OKO pledge, you will be helping to provide every young person with the support and guidance they need to succeed.

Every summer there are hundreds of thousands of young people leaving the support of the education system. As for June 2021, 9.3% of young people from 16-24 are no longer in education or are unemployed. That is over 800,000 school leavers, university graduates, daughters and sons, nieces and nephews, grandchildren, sisters and brothers out there with limited resources, support and guidance.

30 years ago I was one of those young people, and the system failed me like it is failing our young today. Luckily someone gave me a chance, and with support and guidance, I managed to succeed. And I’m now in the position to pay it forward.

So during the pandemic, and while we were all locked away, I started OKO. I knew from the start that to get to the scale we needed to support every young person, we had only one choice. To mobilise those that had done it all before.

To enable every working person to share their own life experience and career expertise to help support and guide the talent of tomorrow, we had to build a mentoring platform on a level never seen before, or even possible through the traditional channels of in-house corporate mentoring, government schemes or charity volunteers.

So when faced with training and mobilising millions of mentors across the entire country to help boost the self confidence and opportunity of the UK’s young adults, it was clear that the only way to do it was to empower the UK’s business leaders to join our mission.

We built the OKO app, that not only benefits the young adults, 18-30, at the start of their journey, but also benefits companies and their people. Boosting confidence all around while bridging the social gaps so prevalent in the country.

We’ve talked about the problem for long enough – now it’s time for action.

OKO is social enterprise on a mission and our only measure of success is the amount of opportunity created for young people. So we have launched the OKO pledge - to provide every young person a mentor.

I am asking all business leaders, MDs, CEOs and big cheeses to join the OKO pledge.

By committing your company and people to the OKO pledge, you will be part of the movement to catalyse true social change, opening doors to a wealth of talent, passion and diversity of thought, delivering a direct injection of knowledge and experience to those who need it most.

The twist? We aren’t a charity and this isn’t a one-time CSR stunt. By engaging with OKO there is a very real kick back to you and your business; your people will be empowered to reflect, grow and develop at the same time as being part of something far greater.

We can’t rely on the government to solve the youth crisis, they have shown time and time again they are simply not capable. Put simply, we need to bring people with the most potential together with those that have the most experience, to a shared benefit. So it’s up to us, the business community, to step up.

Join us and make the pledge to provide every young person a mentor!

Dave Evans
Founder @ OKO

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