How The Brokerage is Transforming Social Mobility

How The Brokerage is Transforming Social Mobility and Championing Social Mobility Day 2024

In an era where social mobility can feel increasingly elusive for many, we at The Brokerage are making a significant impact by providing young people with the tools, opportunities, and support needed to climb the socioeconomic ladder. Here, celebrating Social Mobility Day, we delve into the key barriers to social mobility and how we continue to help shape a more equitable future.

The Challenge of Social Mobility

Social mobility, or the ability for individuals to move up (or down) the social and economic ladder, is a critical aspect of a fair society. However, it is often hindered by various barriers, such as unequal access to education, limited career opportunities, and systemic biases. In many parts of the world, particularly in the UK, where we operate, these challenges are exacerbated by socio-economic divides restricting upward mobility for young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.

What is The Brokerage?

We are a charity dedicated to breaking down these barriers by connecting young people from less-advantaged backgrounds with career opportunities in the corporate world. By focusing on diversity, employment, and skill development, The Brokerage aims to create pathways for social mobility that empower individuals to achieve their full potential.

How The Brokerage Facilitates Social Mobility

  1. Providing Access to Education and Training

Education is a fundamental pillar of social mobility, but access to quality education and training remains uneven. The Brokerage addresses this by offering a range of educational programs and workshops designed to equip young people with the skills and knowledge needed to thrive in the modern job market.

Career Awareness Workshops: These workshops expose students to various industries and career paths, helping them make informed decisions about their futures.

CV and Interview Skills Training: Practical sessions that prepare young people for job applications and interviews, equipping them with the confidence and skills needed to compete in the job market.

  1. Connecting Youth with Professional Networks

One of the most significant barriers to social mobility is the lack of access to professional networks. These networks often provide the informal knowledge, mentorship, and connections crucial for career advancement. The Brokerage bridges this gap by facilitating mentoring relationships and networking opportunities.

Mentorship Programs: Young people are paired with mentors who provide guidance, support, and insights into their chosen fields, helping them navigate their career paths more effectively.

Networking Events: These events offer students the chance to meet and engage with professionals, expanding their networks and opening doors to new opportunities.

  1. Creating Internship and Employment Opportunities

Experience is a key component of employability, but gaining that first step on the ladder can be a significant hurdle, especially for those without connections in their desired industry. The Brokerage works directly with employers to create internships, work placements, and job opportunities for young people.

Internship Programs: The Brokerage partners with companies to provide paid internships, giving students valuable experience and a foot in the door of their chosen careers.

Work Placements: These placements offer real-world experience in various industries, helping students build their CVs and develop essential skills.

  1. Fostering Diversity and Inclusion in the Workplace

The Brokerage not only focuses on individual young people but also works with companies to foster more inclusive and diverse work environments. By advocating for fair recruitment practices and supporting diversity initiatives, The Brokerage helps ensure that opportunities are available to all, regardless of background.

Inclusive Recruitment Training: The Brokerage provides training for employers on how to create more inclusive recruitment processes that recognize and value diverse talents.

Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives: Working with companies to develop and implement strategies that promote diversity and reduce biases in the workplace.

  1. Empowering Through Knowledge and Advocacy

Knowledge is power, and The Brokerage empowers young people with the information they need to make informed career choices. The organization also advocates for policy changes and practices that support greater social mobility.

Career Guidance and Advice: Providing students with resources and advice on educational and career paths, helping them make informed decisions that align with their goals.

Advocacy for Social Change: The Brokerage works to influence policy and practice at a broader level, advocating for changes that promote social mobility and reduce inequality.

Real-World Impact: Success Stories

The real measure of The Brokerage’s success lies in the stories of the young people they have helped. From students who have secured internships at prestigious firms to those who have found their dream jobs through the organization’s programs, The Brokerage has been instrumental in changing lives and creating new possibilities. Young person success stories

The Brokerage CEO – Sarah Devonport is a prime example:

From Disadvantaged to CEO – Why I’m Passionate About Breaking the Class Ceiling

“I’ve never been fully aware of my disadvantage; in many ways, I consider myself the one with the advantage. Resilience, problem-solving ability, empathy, and self-motivation are attributes that have developed from growing up as a disadvantaged working-class person. Luck has been on my side; I was fortunate to find my way into an organization that recruited based on these attributes alone. Since then, I’ve managed to navigate my way through the corporate world, reaching a level where I can use my experiences, skills, and knowledge as a driver for change.

“The Brokerage exists to dismantle the inequalities that lead to talent being overlooked within the corporate workplace. The organisation is in a unique position to break the class ceiling and rectify injustices to ensure that young people with these attributes can access and succeed in top jobs.

“As the new CEO, my vision is to scale up the operation, extending our reach beyond London and into the most deprived areas of the UK. We will expand our services to help more young people become socially mobile and equip more employers to ensure they retain them.

“My life is different from that of my parents; I have achieved social mobility, and I am one of the lucky ones. My mission is to share my ‘luck’ through education, support, and the continued evolution of our services to ensure we adapt to the challenges this new world brings.”

Conclusion: Building a Brighter Future

The Brokerage is more than just a charity; it’s a catalyst for change, breaking down the barriers that prevent young people from reaching their full potential. By providing access to education, creating employment opportunities, and fostering inclusive workplaces, The Brokerage is helping to create a society where social mobility is not just a possibility, but a reality for all.

There are many ways for those who want to support social mobility, whether through volunteering, donating, or partnering with The Brokerage. Together, we can build a brighter, more equitable future where every young person has the chance to succeed.

Get in touch today.

  • I’d like to thank you for giving students the opportunity to take part in the schools essay competition. It was an enriching experience for all participants.