The Sheffield Star reports that schools, colleges, and higher education providers in the region will be invited to take part in a ‘life changing’ study abroad scheme which is funded by the UK Government. Students will be encouraged to apply for the Turing Scheme, which replaces the Erasmus Scheme.
The Turing Scheme, named for the British scientist and mathematician Alan Turing, will provide funding for international opportunities in education and training around the world. It will be open to UK and British Overseas Territories organisations, encompassing a broad range of training and educational institutions.
The experience of travelling and studying abroad is invaluable in helping young people with their personal development, expanding language skills, employability, and understanding of other cultures. The new scheme is being hailed as an ambassador for ‘Global Britain’, helping to enhance international relationships.
Rani Moorcroft MBE FRSA, who instigated ‘Turing passport to the world’, said: “Sheffield is a thriving community, a young community. The council is already looking at race disparities. All the component parts are there. Sheffield can be a leader - taking the lead in tackling some of the most difficult issues.”
Moorcroft said that the coronavirus pandemic has exacerbated inequalities, particularly among young people, who are in danger of becoming disengaged and underoccupied. She highlighted the importance of giving the younger generation something to aim for and look forward to.
The organisers of the £110m Turing scheme will be keen to attract applicants from a diverse range of economic, cultural, and ethnic backgrounds, according to the Star article. The first placements and exchanges will take place from September 2021.
Commonwealth countries such as the Caribbean, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Jamaica, India, and Nigeria will be a part of the programme. Students will be able to take part in a range of activities, such as teaching English in schools, and working for environmental, social and governance programmes.
There will also be the opportunity to take part in safaris, pick tea leaves, and plant mangroves. Moorcroft views these activities as a chance for members of the Windrush generation to give something back to their parent countries. She is especially keen to break down barriers to achievement for younger people.
Moorcroft has also founded a community interest company called Zedgeneration, which encourages small global communities to work together and built a better future.
They have partnered with a not-for-profit social enterprise company called Catalyst in Communities, and also Buildeco, a construction company which works in partnership with councils and housing associations to provide modular flat-pack eco-designed housing.
Robin Lockhart FRSA, director of Catalyst in Communities and a Commonwealth Youth ambassador, said: “All new knowledge exists outside of our comfort zone and our job as Youth Coaches at Catalyst In Communities is to facilitate processes that stretch the comfort zone.”
Together the organisations hope to create ways of working and living sustainably, both at home and overseas. They are keen to invest in the green economy, lower fuel bills, reduce poverty levels, and mitigate the effects of climate change.
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