Every year the One Young World summit brings together young people from businesses, governments and the general public from around the world to connect, debate and formulate solutions for the pressing issues communities are facing. The summit also provides charities and businesses the opportunity to deliver workshops that shine a light on initiatives underway to inspire change.
This is the sixth year that MUFG has sponsored delegates to attend the summit, which took place in late October in London. With a variety of colleagues from MUFG in attendance at the event, we were also selected to deliver a workshop alongside The BIG Alliance, a local charity partner, which aimed to raise awareness of the impact derived from our collaborative efforts to address societal issues.
On the surface, London is a vibrant and affluent city with many opportunities for all, but statistics say otherwise. The reality is that it has one of the highest child poverty rates in the UK – some areas are as high as 43%. MUFG's Corporate Social Responsibility strategy focuses on supporting young people who are disadvantaged by these high poverty levels, through equipping them with financial literacy, employability skills and by raising their aspirations. We do this through working in partnership with local charities such as The BIG Alliance, who truly understand the needs of the local community and support us in directing our resources to where they will have the most impact.
Titled 'Social Mobility: The Power of Collaboration between Corporates and the Third Sector', the workshop was led by two of MUFG's One Young World ambassadors, Zinab Aldaraji, Head of Corporate Social Responsibility in EMEA, and Camilla Allnatt, Vice President in Corporate Banking, alongside Ayesha Begum, Education Project Coordinator at The BIG Alliance. The workshop focused on the outcomes of MUFG's Schools Mentoring Programme, which has been running in London since 2013. It aimed to raise awareness of the benefits programmes like this can deliver and highlight their ability to break down barriers for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.
Through a variety of interactive debates, real life examples, as well as sharing valuable best practice, we ensured the 55 attending delegates – mainly representing global corporates – had plenty to learn and take away. The session highlighted the benefits of mentoring as a tool for change, and gave attendees the opportunity to take forward their learnings, either in a personal capacity, or as part of an initiative in the organisations they represented.
As One Young World ambassadors, they are the best role models for young people in their local communities. Through mentoring, they can address a variety of issues such as crime and gang violence, unemployment, poverty, education and empowerment.
The workshop is testament to MUFG's collaboration with The BIG Alliance, and we are grateful for opportunities to share our successes and look forward to continue spreading the positive impact while inspiring others along the way.