Blog

Nurture Kindness

1 minute read We all love being on the receiving end of kindness. A kind word, a friendly smile or help before we’ve even asked for it. Scientists love to talk about the ‘ripple effect’ and how one simple act of kindness can spark another, and another, and another! Kindness can take courage. It can […]

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A lockdown hug

As the UK heads into another lockdown, the team at Citywise want to send all teachers, parents and children a big lockdown hug! Yeti sends you all the love! The Citywise Yeti wants to remind you all that this time of lockdown and waiting will be over one day…but not YET! If you’re feeling frustrated […]

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The year the world changed forever

(2 minute read) It sounds like the title for a dystopian movie, but reality has been far stranger than fiction. The past year has posed extraordinary challenges for everyone as the Covid-19 crisis has swept the world, but although we are all in the same storm, we are not all in the same boat. Families […]

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A different kind of Christmas

A different kind of Christmas, but a very special one! Even though we can’t interact in the normal ways this Christmas we have still gathered and celebrated in every way we can! This December, children in our communities have gathered for two Christmas sessions and we’ve hosted a Family Drop-In too! We’ve been able to […]

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Wholesome Homemade Pizza!

When that urge for pizza hits, but you’re looking for a healthier and hands-on way to enjoy it, look no further! We’re passionate about families and we recently gave this recipe and all the ingredients to lots of Citywise families at our recent Christmas sessions. If you would like to make this a fun Pizza […]

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Delicious Oreo Truffles Recipe!

We have all spent a lot more time with our families than we expected to this year! Citywise is on a mission to help families bond at a time when it can be tricky to do the normal things that help us relax or have fun. Over the years children on our community programmes have […]

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The Gift of Friendship

(3 minute read) This year has been an extraordinary one. Not in the way that you might describe a solar eclipse, or the birth of a child. But in the way you might describe living during a global pandemic, watching the world change forever. We may have found ourselves uttering new phrases like ‘corona-coaster’, ‘zoom-fatigue’, […]

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Manchester December Parties (NOW FULL)

Join us this December on either Friday 4th and Saturday 5th December (or both!) You child will get valuable time with a Citywise Mentor as they complete activities, crafts and games together. We can’t wait. We have room for 12 children on each day, so please let us know if for any reason you can […]

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It’s so good to be back!

Restrictions in Manchester have meant it has taken us a little longer to be back together in person which made our October Camp last week extra special! We had such a fun three days of reconnecting, learning more about our emotional and physical health and how we can cope with challenges by showing resilience. We’ve […]

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Manchester October Half Term Camp – NOW FULL

Join us at the Citywise Centre for a half-term camp! The camp will run each morning from 9am – 12:30pm from Monday to Wednesday this October 26-28th. We’re only able to open this camp to 15 children, so if you can come we encourage you to sign up and come every day! We’ll create a […]

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Jess’ story: more than just volunteering

Signing up to volunteer with Citywise when I was at University was one of the best decisions I ever made. I always knew I wanted to work with children in the field of Psychology, and I knew that by volunteering with Citywise I would be able to get some experience. However, I had no idea […]

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Coronavirus: Our Response

We’re doing what we can to be ready to offer our programmes to children when it’s safe to do so. After what could be months of lockdown, children’s mental health and wellbeing will be tested, even for the most resilient child. We’re exploring the idea of hosting virtual summer camps and how we can best support children […]

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Spring Camp 2020

Bookings are open for our free spring holiday camp – scroll down! Children currently attending P4-P7 can join the spring holiday camp taking place in Glasgow this April! Run by Citywise staff and supported by our outstanding team of volunteers, your child will make new friends, try new activities, stay active, eat healthily and have lots […]

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Make your Families Wishes Come True

(4-minute read) 2020. A new year and a new decade. The New Year brings the opportunity  to reflect on the past year and on the future. We have discussed in other blogs how reflecting on ourselves and our experiences, as well as being aware of our desires for the future will motivate us towards growth!  […]

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How To Raise Strong Children

(4-minute read)  Self Knowledge is one of the key foundational steps in our curriculum. It is important to know who we are, our strengths and development areas in order to know how we would like to grow, and who we would like to become. At Citywise we believe that we all have more strengths than […]

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Vote for Virtue!

As the United Kingdom heads for its third general election in four years, Luke Wilkinson considers how the British people can vote virtuously to build a country of character. As head of a charity which focusses on personal development, I spend my days considering how to help young people learn about and develop their character. […]

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New beginnings in Glasgow

2019 has been a huge year at Citywise. Not only have we celebrated our 25th anniversary, we have also introduced an entirely new way of working with children, their families and communities. And not content with this, we’ve also taken the opportunity to completely re-launch our work in Glasgow! If this is all news to […]

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Growing in Self Knowledge

The first of the seven key areas that make up the Citywise curriculum is Self Knowledge. During our first few sessions we reflect on who we are. We think about the different things that make up our character and that make up “me”. We explore what has influenced who we are today, and think about […]

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Manchester Heroes Academy 2019!

What a two weeks it has been! We can now present to you the Citywise Heroes Academy Manchester Class of 2019!  They have had so much fun over the last two weeks, making new friends and learning all about what it takes to be an everyday hero!! They have been to the Museum of Science […]

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Citywise Drama Camp!

🎼 “We’re not average. We’re not average. All that we do is magic! Don’t you ever call us average!” 🎼 If you made it to the Final Performance then you will know what a talented bunch of children we had come along to the Drama Camp!  They learnt about and practised all the skills they […]

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A Superhero Poem

This poem was written by one of our Everyday Heroes and her Mentor during one of Summer Camps, and was performed at their Celebration Show in July 2019!  A Superhero A superhero brings about justice  so that humankind can have peace A superhero is always kind especially when helping the blind A superhero has great wisdom […]

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Glasgow Heroes Academy 2019!

What a two weeks it has been! We can now present to you the Citywise Heroes Academy Glasgow Class of 2019!  They have had so much fun over the last two weeks, making new friends and learning all about what it takes to be an everyday hero!! They have been to the Glasgow Science Centre […]

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Our Kids are Kind!

At our After School clubs, we are currently exploring our virtues, ‘the things inside of us that make us better people’. The bread of butter of this is kindness. How often do we as parents find ourselves trying to persuade our children to be more kind? To share, to not hit, to use kind words. […]

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Thank you mentors!

Last week we hosted Thank You events in Glasgow and Manchester to say a proper thank you to our mentors and volunteers for everything they have given this year!  120 volunteers have undergone training to help equip them to form healthy, nurturing relationships as mentors to young people across 9 projects this year! In total […]

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Another incredible year!

Certificates have been given out, awards presented and evaluation forms collected which can only mean one thing – our school projects have come to an end for 2019!  Across Glasgow and Manchester, 94 young people in 8 school projects have been paired with a mentor this year and been guided through a a programme of […]

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An Easter Egg-stravaganza!

Spring Family Fun On Saturday 27th April 2019 we hosted our first Spring Family Fun event, and were delighted to welcome 20 local families to our Citywise Centre in Manchester! It was a massive success despite the seasonal weather, with lots of bouncing on the bouncy castle, baking chocolatey goodies, making junk kites and getting […]

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Thriving Family Values

Certain values may have been drummed into us as children, “sit still at the table”, “Talk when you’re spoken to”,  “Keep your room tidy”, “Your school work is important”, “Don’t give up, let’s try again,” “tell the truth”. Sometimes we may have rebelled against these or may see them as making us who we are […]

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Summer Camps 2019

Bookings are open for our FREE summer holiday camps! Children aged 7-12 years old can join one of three camps taking place in Manchester or Glasgow this summer! Run by Citywise staff and supported by our outstanding team of volunteers, your child will make new friends, try new activities, stay active, eat healthily and have lots […]

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The group setting: Responding to problems with continuity

Youth mentoring programmes are common around the world as prevention programmes. However, evaluation of such programmes finds again and again that their positive effects are small in magnitude (DuBois et al., 2011). Therefore, it is becoming increasingly clear that we cannot simply assume that pairing up any young person with a mentor will automatically lead […]

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25 years of mentoring

The text below is adapted from a speech delivered by Citywise Chief Executive Luke Wilkinson at our 25th Anniversary celebration events, on 13th March 2019 in Glasgow, and 22nd March 2019 in Manchester. I’m going to tell you a bit about Citywise in a moment, but before that I’d like to start by asking you […]

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Growth Mindset: Setting our Children Free to Thrive

I had an experience with my daughter recently which opened my eyes to the pressure children can feel to succeed, a feeling which I know all too well as an adult. It can be both a driving force and crippling stress in life. The artwork My daughter was drawing with a friend. We were very […]

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How to: Deal With Stress Purposefully

How do we respond when we are in high-stress situations? Our bodies react in certain ways: Fight, flight or freeze. This is to protect us from dangers, but in everyday parenting often the situations we are in aren’t necessarily dangerous to us or our child, yet we still react the same. At Citywise we know […]

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What Means the Most to You?

In our day to day lives, it can be easy to lose sight of the big picture; food shopping, the school run, meal times and bedtimes, sometimes these things can become mundane rather than meaningful. But in fact, we are surrounded by meaning all around us; nature, work, moments of play and love in the […]

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How to: Help Our Children With Self Control

One of the key things we focus on in our Citywise School Projects with the young people we mentor is Self-control. Our impulses are very much related to our emotions, that’s something that parents know altogether too well. Sometimes children can seem to be able to do very little about their impulses and their emotions, […]

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The Importance of: A curriculum

Youth mentoring programmes are popular around the world as prevention and intervention programmes. However, evaluation of such programmes has repeatedly found that positive effects are often small in magnitude (DuBois et al., 2011). Why such small effects? It’s time to move towards more supervised, structured and targeted mentoring programmes. Lyons, McQullin and Henderson (2018) recently analysed […]

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A year of new beginnings

As our mentoring projects finish for the Christmas break and mentors head home for a well-earned rest, we’ve been reflecting on what has been an extraordinary year for Citywise. Every year is special at Citywise but this year we’ve proudly celebrated a number of first steps. We delivered our first project curriculum grounded in research […]

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Christmas Appeal 2018

Let’s cut to the chase. We all know (deep down) that giving is the best part about Christmas. You’ve carefully thought up, saved up and wrapped up those gifts, knowing the joy it will bring to the special people in your life. Why wait for December 25th for to unwrap the joy of the Christmas […]

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Pioneering family services at Citywise

As part of an exciting new partnership with the Greater Good Science Center at the University of California, Citywise is delighted to be able to start offering support to entire families. Complementing our existing work with young people, we’ll be designing work that helps parents raise confident, caring kids! One of Citywise’s core beliefs is […]

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The Citywise Centre Heroes Academy

This August we ran our very own Heroes Academy just around the corner from where Citywise began 24 years ago. You can catch up on a bit of the history here.  We had a lot of fun gardening, baking, playing sports and meeting Robin (sadly, Batman couldn’t make it). We also spent time learning about […]

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Heroes Academy at St Monica’s High School

It may seem like winter is beginning to set in, but it was only last month that we ran our Manchester schools Summer Project: the Heroes Academy. We are so passionate about our Heroes Academy which not only supports young people to become Everyday Heroes, but also helps them to grow in confidence, refresh their […]

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