How We Got Here
Cultural Capital really began in September 1990, on a wet September morning in a CDT workshop in a failing East London secondary School. Where Asad and Nathan first met as class mates. Despite the best efforts of some teachers our experiences of secondary school education did not provide or facilitate any meaningful Qualification, what it did provide is a shared notion of been let down by the system.
We both left this experience disenfranchised and underwhelmed. However, it did not deter us from success in fact it made us more resilient and determined to prove naysayers wrong. We both left school determined to improve our standing in life and recover the learning we missed while in school. we both went to college and then on to university and eventually developed in to careers in education and criminal justice respectively gaining over 30 years collective experience.
However, after years of working in our respective fields we again became disenfranchised and decided that we needed to do something about it. Over the course of many conversations discussing the intricacy’s and nuances of our employment experiences, we each discussed the possibility setting up an organisation and delivering services and training for ourselves. a service that focused on meeting the needs of the services user and not selling them short ensuring that we facilitated the apocopate levels of support and developed an approach responsive to all parties involved in the delivery.
In 2013 we both decided to take a leap of faith and left our jobs to set up Cultural Capital and commit ourselves full time, initially working with faith and community-based groups in order to gain an understanding of the support needs of young people and the organisations and services that aimed to support them while building a track record of successful outcomes.
Strength to strength
In 2014 all our hard work seemed to have paid off, we were given the opportunity to work in partnership with Prospects Services to deliver the Youth Contract. a European Social Funded project targeting at risk 16 to 18-year olds deemed vulnerable or at risk of disengagement from education. We rebranded the program as The Young People’s Plan, going beyond contractual obligations. We extended the duration of support from 6 to 12 months and added the offer of financial support to each young person engaged on to the program.
By the end of the program in March 2016 we had achieved unprecedented success over the course of the program Cultural Capital contribution represented 30% of the overall Youth Contract program delivery in London surpassing large “established” organisations who have been delivering these types of programs for years. We engaged 1053 young people on to the program into full time education or training with 883 staying in education and training for an entire academic year. Provided £220,750.00 of financial support for young people (to facilitate educational and enrichment-based equipment, materials, trips workshop and services. Since 2016 we have continued to grow and have developed a reputation for our ability to continually deliver impactful projects and initiatives.
“We knew that extending the support would make our job more challenging but from the outset we recognized the benefits to young people would outweigh the costs. We wanted to go that extra mile to make it really work remembering all those long discussions we had before starting Cultural Capital and putting it all in to practice”