Stepney Bank Stables in Newcastle provides opportunities for children and young people growing up in challenging situations to grow their confidence, develop their resilience and gain qualifications through equestrian activities.
To support their charitable work, the stable operates a commercial riding school, where its young people are also given the opportunity to gain vital employability skills and work experience.
Uniquely, after receiving support from Sported, the stable’s then Participation Development Manager, Sara Newson, has since gone onto become a Sported volunteer herself. We talk to her about going the ‘full-circle’ – from being the Sported mentee to becoming a Sported mentor.
Why did you decide to become a Sported volunteer yourself?
“I decided to become a mentor whilst at a Sported event for mentors and projects. I was inspired listening to other people’s stories and felt I had skills I could offer. I was also keen to develop my own knowledge and experience, and felt becoming a mentor would be an ideal development opportunity.”
What have you learned from your experiences?
“The main thing I’ve learnt as a Sported mentor is about the difficulties running an organisation without paid staff. When mentoring an all-volunteer project I had to make a quick adjustment to a change in pace as the volunteers were fitting in completing tasks around work and family lives. It’s also helped me realised how much I’ve learnt over the past seven years in post at Stepney and the gaps in my knowledge particularly around VCS infrastructure outside of Newcastle.”
For more information about Stepney Bank Stables, please visit www.stepneybank.co.uk .