Charly and Becca were secondary school teachers in North West London when they witnessed the multiple barriers facing girls in their classrooms:  

The pressure to conform to ideals

A lack of confidence and self-belief

A lack of professional female role models in their networks

They established a one-to-one mentoring scheme for 30 girls in 2013, based on research showing that conversations and personal relationships could have a big impact on challenging stereotypes and expectations.

They believed that the girls needed a greater access to opportunities, but also the confidence to seize those opportunities and the skills to thrive in them.

The Girls’ Network mentoring was soon in high demand, and now operates across Greater London, Sussex, Portsmouth, the West Midlands, Greater Manchester, the North East, and Liverpool City Region, working with more than 1,000 girls each year.

93% of girls on the programme last year said their mentor had improved their confidence, and 96% believe their mentor has helped them feel more positive about the future.

Each girl knew at least two more professionals than she did before taking part in the programme.