Project Description

CONNOR TOMLINSON

Age 17, Surrey

At the age of 13, I became a Peer Mentor before becoming Chair of Student Council the following year, and Head Boy the year after. This involved fundraising, campaigning on student welfare and volunteering at community events such as in my local community centre.

I got involved in social action in order to make a positive difference to the young people in my community, and to represent their views in decision-making.

Balancing full-time education, a part-time job and volunteering can have its difficulties, especially when some events mean travelling long distances, but ultimately I find it’s worth it to give back, and gain immeasurably.

During my volunteering journey, due to my experience in youth social action, I joined the British Red Cross as an Inspired Action Ambassador & Youth Engagement Support Worker. I now regularly campaign and fundraise in my role as Member of Youth Parliament for Surrey. I hold a number of voluntary positions with various charities, including the British Red Cross and StudentVoice UK.

Growing on up in Hackney, London, on ‘murder mile’, I have seen firsthand the effects a low income and coming from a BME background can have on your life chances and I wanted to have a positive impact to change this.

As a lead mentor with Debate Mate I teach students who are at high risk of expulsion from school the art of debating and communicating effectively. My other social action includes being the founder of a social enterprise that helps young people from diverse backgrounds to achieve their potential.

I believe youth social action will lead to real change.