Ormiston Trust disperses approximately a million pounds of grant funding annually. It runs no openly advertised grants programmes, rather it supports aspects of work undertaken by Ormiston Families and Ormiston Academies that meets its charitable aims. Recent highlights have included:
The Bursary Fund
Since its inception in 1969, the Trust has been committed to increasing the life chances of young people, by giving them the skills and support they need to lead happy and productive lives. Education is key to this and we believe that a broad and balanced curriculum is needed to give pupils skills and confidence to succeed in the future. For this to happen, education must extend beyond the classroom. All pupils should have the opportunity to take part in activities where they will develop social skills, work with others, improve their confidence and be exposed to new experiences. The aim, therefore, of the Bursary Fund is to ensure that an individual’s household income is not a barrier to participation in enrichment activities. We piloted the fund in December 2014 and have already made a number of grants to individuals in Ormiston schools.
Since 2012, Ormiston Trust has invited students to apply for funding to run projects that meet need and make a positive and lasting difference to academies or their local communities. The best thing about this fund is that, from application stage through to the final evaluation, projects are run by the pupils at academies. Its aim is to develop pupils’ confidence, organisation, budgeting and leadership skills. Please click on the title link and find out more about individual projects.
Smoothing the journey of social mobility
In September 2013 Ormiston Trust commissioned this research project, to raise achievement by identifying and removing barriers to achievement for girls. It builds on the Specialists Schools and Academy’s Trust’s 2010 research, Bucking the Trend, which examines ways of increasing social mobility and overcoming barriers for working class boys.
The Trust was thrilled with the outcome of this project, which was jointly designed with researcher Tom Welch, wrote Bucking the Trend, and five Ormiston academy principals from the Eastern region (Endeavour, Venture, Victory, Sudbury and Denes). Through talking to pupils, the research identified barriers to learning and attainment faced by working class girls. The results of the research were published in 2014.
National research consistently points to the crucial role of parents in raising young people’s levels of attainment, confidence and aspiration. For the last 18 months, Ormiston Families has been piloting work in academies through its Engage project. The project uses interventions which support individual pupils and their families. These include: 1-1 support for young people within school, home visits to engage parents/carers and a Positive Parenting Programme. Responses from the pilot schools were very positive and the Trust is pleased to report that there are now plans to deliver the project more widely, in particular in Ormiston Academies.
Ormiston Families’ ground breaking Mpower project works with women in Ipswich who continue to become pregnant after their children have been taken into care. Its aim is to empower women to take control of their lives by offering them intensive support to improve their confidence and break negative cycles. Support includes: help accessing mental health services and therapy, contraception advice, domestic abuse support, help with housing and benefit applications, and guidance to access employment or training.
The Trust is proud to support this project, which has been incredibly successful since it started in 2012. 100% of service users now use contraception, 100% in need of psychological or emotional help access support services, 78% with drug or alcohol dependency engage with support services and 71% have found a new interest, employment or training.
The Men’s Project
Ormiston Men’s Project supports men to become positive role models for children by giving them skills to become effective parents and partners. Men can attend range of courses to build their confidence, learn practical baby care skills, become positive parents, find work and childcare and understand the UK education system. This pioneering programme, run from Cambridge, helps men of all ages make positive contributions to family and wider community life.