YOUNG people at risk of exclusion from school, criminal activity, substance abuse, mental health issues and many other problems, will be provided with a mentor to help them overcome their difficulties.

The Door Youth Project in Stroud has received £5,000 from Gloucestershire Freemasons to expand their work.

The Door Mentoring Scheme provides vital one to one support and provides young people with an army of more than 50 positive role models, ready to help them move forward in their lives.

Each young person mentored under the scheme costs the charity £10 per month.

Mentoring has clear and tangible results.

Every young person is assessed against established criteria every three months.

On average, each of the three key areas, Education and Aspiration, Social Skills and Managing Negative Behaviours, show positive progress of between 20 – 25 per cent.

Over the last year, demand for the service has risen by 100 per cent.

Referrals come from local schools, mental health service, social care, as well as The Door's other services and directly from young people and their families.

The grant from Gloucestershire Freemasons comes through the Masonic Charitable Foundation, which is funded by Freemasons, their families and friends, from across England and Wales.

Barrie Voyce, Director of The Door Youth Project said: “We’re very grateful to Gloucestershire Freemason for their generous grant which will help us to mentor hundreds more young people who badly need direction in their lives. This can be a life-changing experience for the young people concerned, and is equally beneficial for the community as a whole.”

Tim Henderson-Ross Head of Gloucestershire Freemasons said: “We’re very pleased to be able to support The Door Project, which does outstanding work with young people across Gloucestershire. By intervening early, young lives at risk can be turned around. This is hugely important work.”

The photograph shows Tim meeting 24 year old Scott Boyling who came to The Door with a number of personal challenges and is now training to be a mentor himself at The Door.

On the right is Alistair Anderson who is the Mentoring Team Leader where the grant was requested to help boost their mentoring programme.

For more information about the Door Youth Project, please contact Anne Townsend, 01453 756745.