I wanted to give something back by volunteering in my community.

At The Kids Network we want all children to benefit from having a mentor to support them to live the life they deserve.  Our brilliant volunteer mentors have an enormous impact on the children they are paired with.

We were very proud that some of our volunteer mentors were celebrated in a recent article in the Daily Mail and we wanted to continue this celebration by highlighting each of those stories and the words from those volunteer mentors.

Meet Alfie, a graphic designer from East London.

“I love my job and I’ve got fantastic friends and a wonderful girlfriend — but I wanted to give something back by volunteering in my community. I ended up having one of the best years being a big brother to my awesome Little Londoner. I applied to volunteer in January 2023 and I was thrilled when I was matched with a ten-year-old boy who I was told was shy so might struggle moving on to secondary school.

I suggested we get to know each other by drawing our favourite things — from foods to sports. He really warmed up and I could see he was a fantastic artist.

We planned expeditions — like going bowling or visiting the Tate Modern. But the best times we had were when we were just playing basketball in the park or sitting drawing together.

Over the year I noticed him really grow in confidence, but saying goodbye last month was tough. We’d grown close.

Life’s so full on, but when you’re around kids, you have to take a pause and really listen. It’s definitely convinced me I want to be a dad one day.”

If you are interested in supporting The Kids Network, please head to our donations page or find out how to become a mentor and give your time to be a hero for a little Londoner.



This article was written by Tessa Cunningham and was originally published in the Daily Mail in April 2024.

The photograph is by Lezli+Rose; hair and make up by Amanda Clarke and Amber Sibley at Joy Goodman; styling by Camilla Ridley-Day and Kathryn Winter.

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