Future First and Northern Power Women launch partnership

The life chances of young people across the country have been given a huge boost thanks to a new partnership just launched between Northern Power Women (NPW) and Future First.

Northern Power Women – a ground-breaking network of business people – and education charity Future First have joined forces to give the next generation the support and encouragement they need to make a success of their lives, while also allowing businesses to connect with up-and-coming talent.

With NPW offering a powerful network of role models and Future First providing a decade’s experience of supporting alumni to give back to their former schools, the partnership promises to provide lasting benefits for both young people and businesses at a critical time for the UK.

Central to the partnership is the development of a digital link between the two organisations’ networks. Future First will build a digital hub to connect with NPW’s existing Power Platform.

Speaking exclusively to Educate magazine, Simone Roche MBE, founder and chief executive officer of NPW, said: “We are really excited to be forming this partnership with Future First. For years Northern Power Women has been creating a massive hall of role models so when Lorraine, CEO of Future First, connected with me because of our shared values and passion around role models I really felt there couldn’t be a better fit. Role models are in both our DNA and bringing these two amazing organisations together to do wider, further good is powerful!”

Discussing the benefits for both students and teachers, Simone said: “It will benefit students by growing the alumni community through the Northern Power Women community, directing them into schools to be those all-important visible and relatable role models.

“Equally for teachers, they will bring a different point of view being from different sectors, of different abilities and with different successes because everyone has a different story. By bringing these people into schools, we can help teachers guide our young people.”

There are already a number of businesses and organisations on board. Simone continued: “There will be so many different businesses from all different sectors. United Utilities – the provider in the NW of England who ensure we have water coming out the tap every day and our loos are flushed.

The Co-operative Bank, who have a national footprint and a real passion around community. Bank of New York Mellon, a massive and global organisation that does not just offer finance jobs. Liverpool Football Club, an organisation focussed on sport as well as the business of sport in a supportive role. The Royal Navy, as a recently decorated honorary Lieutenant Commander, I’m delighted to be working with the service and bringing those role models into schools. With the help of these organisations and many more we can and will make real impact offering wider opportunity to young people.”

Set up five years ago, NPW was born out of a need to accelerate gender equality in the North and currently has a 60,000-strong network. It now spreads across the UK and spans all sectors, genders and race demographics.

Future First was created 10 years ago with a vision to create a world where a young person’s start in life does not limit their future. The charity specialises in helping schools and colleges develop thriving alumni networks and build links with leading businesses, so students can meet, learn from and be inspired by relatable role models so they can see worlds beyond their own.

This unique resource will be available from September 2021, with an exciting platform to better connect young people with business leaders, entrepreneurs, trailblazers – all with a different story to tell.