4 August 2021 – If Chloe Can, a charity focussed on empowering young people to follow their dreams, has continued giving career advice and guidance with the support of Zoom while restrictions have disrupted in-person education.
If Chloe Can is the brainchild of former cabinet minister and Tatton MP Esther McVey. It works with schools to help career progression, planning and personal goal setting through the Gatsby Benchmarks, a framework for career guidance based on international evidence developed to support schools. Working mainly with girls aged 12 to 14, the charity helps children look at their progression opportunities, identify their attributes, and highlight which qualifications they may require for an array of jobs. It also teaches vital skills of Confidence, Assertiveness and Resilience (CAR programme) as part of their PHSE and career studies.
The charity is supported by over 200 role models who help the young people involved to achieve their dreams, with key involvement from inspirational women including Debbie Moore, the founder of Pineapple Dance Studios and the first woman in the UK to set up a public limited company (PLC), and Jo Salter, Britain’s first female fast jet pilot. Other industry-leading role models that have taken part in the charity’s career magazines and videos include businesswoman Deborah Meaden, chef and Masterchef judge Monica Galetti, police commissioner Cressida Dick, and vaccinologist behind the Oxford/Astrazeneca vaccine Professor Sarah Gilbert.
When the UK’s first national lockdown began, the charity began exclusively using Zoom’s video conferencing technology to help more students follow their chosen career. The use of Zoom has enabled If Chloe Can to continue its free sessions instead of requiring physical attendance at schools. Connecting with students across the country, the charity helps them understand their career opportunities during a period where education has been severely disrupted.
“The If Chloe Can course has been a highlight of the year for some of these girls,” commented Sophie Betts, a teacher at King’s Leadership Academy Warrington. “The opportunity to learn from leaders from a range of careers has been truly inspiring. The girls have been able to be self-reflective throughout and have been encouraged to see their own strengths and how this could relate to their futures. Most importantly, we have seen their confidence and self-belief grow.”
“Having started life as a Barnardo’s child myself, and ending up as a government Cabinet Minister, I believe anyone can achieve their goal given the right support, knowledge, and opportunities,” said Esther McVey MP, founder, If Chloe Can. “This online course is the culmination of more than 15 years of work, both practical and academic, involving teachers, parents, and thousands of pupils, driven by a desire to promote social mobility and extend opportunities to all.”
“It’s always humbling to see the unique ways that Zoom has supported all kinds of organisations throughout the pandemic, and If Chloe Can is no exception,” added Phil Perry, Head of UK & Ireland, Zoom. “The past year has seen many classes and exams halted, leaving students unsure about their prospects. The world is gradually going back to normal, and this summer offers an opportunity to catch up on anything they’ve missed out on. If Chloe Can has continued to help young people improve their independent learning skills and raise their ambitions, setting them up for university and future careers. We’re pleased that Zoom has helped to play a role in that.”
Zoom has also extended its free offering for schools around the globe, from primary to secondary, to the end of 2021 as part of its ongoing commitment to the education sector, enabling teachers to teach and students to learn from anywhere.