26.10.2023 Educator Insights First Give News

Meet our facilitators!

Running the First Give social action programme in our partner schools across England and Wales would be impossible without our fantastic team of facilitators. They are the people who run First Give events in your schools such as the Launch Assembly, Presentation Skills Workshop, and the First Give Final. We wanted to introduce the team to you, our partners and supporters, because they are such an integral part of our charity and programme delivery. Check out their bios below to find out more about what they do and why they joined First Give!

London and South East:

Audrey Corno 

“I joined First Give in October 2023! My background is in theatre and education, where I was learning and witnessing how drama can improve public speaking skills, which in turn has a massive impact on young people’s confidence. I was therefore drawn to working at First Give not only for the fantastic cause of igniting a social conscience in young people and doing invaluable charity work, but because I know that through this programme, the students gain crucial life skills such as public speaking, teamwork and research. I think it is paramount for young people to engage in social action in school because it instils values of compassion, community and empathy that they will bring into their adult life. I can’t wait to get started!” 

Luke Oliver 

“I first joined First Give in 2017 in Wales and stayed with the charity when I moved to London in 2021. My background is in acting and was drawn to First Give because I think the ‘soft skills’ the programme works on are vital to building well rounded people. As well as developing public speaking skills, the chance for young people to do Social Action is so empowering, seeing them utilise and showcase skills they might not usually get to display in an academic environment; I find it so personally inspiring.”

Beth Shaw 

“I joined First Give in 2022, soon after moving from Australia to London. I have a diverse background in communications, PR, and fitness but was ultimately most drawn to working in the charity sector. I found the First Give facilitator position by searching ‘charity jobs part time’. The words which jumped out at me were ‘empowering students to care about social issues’, term time only’ and ‘freelance’. The best part of this job has to be seeing the impact that a Presentation Skills Workshop has when you return the following week to run the Final. It’s great when the students have really taken on board all the feedback and they step up on the day. I find I get a lump in my throat at every final! Seeing their confidence grow is very rewarding.”

Anuli Changa

“I joined First Give in October 2023. I am a creative and workshop facilitator with experience across the Education, Heritage, Mental Health and Performing Arts sectors. I am passionate about tackling educational disadvantage and providing spaces for young people to share their opinions. Social action is a perfect conduit for young people to use their voices to affect change for causes they care about. I am particularly looking forward to the First Give Presentation Skills workshops because of my performance background.”

Gosia Pudelko Kelly

“I joined the First Give team in 2021 and never looked back. I have always worked in education but in various roles and capacities. I planned, managed, and delivered various programmes to develop students’ research skills as well as their ability and confidence in independent learning. I started to seek a career opportunity where my love of working with young people can have an extra meaning, and that is how I found First Give! Having a platform in school to discover issues affecting students’ local communities and then lead social action to make a tangible difference to those communities, bring some incredible benefits to the students. They become invested, feel useful, and grow in confidence and self-efficacy. Observing how invested they become to help their charities, how they grow in confidence, creativity and responsibility within their communities warms my heart every time!” 

Emma Yentis

“I joined First Give September 2023 after having just left teaching. I think it’s important for young people to engage in social action in school to give them meaningful prospects and transferable skills. As part of the programme, young people will not only learn about the importance of social action on real issues, but will learn public speaking, group work and presentation skills. I have been working with young people for pretty much all of my life, completed my PGCE and CELTA, and taught in both Key Stage 1 and Lower Key stage 2. First Give is the perfect place for me as it still gives me the opportunity to be a part of influencing young people’s lives in schools in a meaningful way. The programme structure is so clearly planned out to give the best possible chances for the young people to really get stuck into social action work and I can’t wait to be a part of that process!” 

Charlotte Dunn

“I joined First Give in October 2023 and I am really looking forward to seeing and hearing about all the amazing work that young people are doing to raise awareness about social issues that impact their communities. Having previously run the First Give programme when I was a teacher, I was drawn to working with the charity as I have seen first-hand how impactful the programme is on the young people who participate. Engaging in social action empowers young people to make meaningful contributions to their communities, as well as helping them develop their social and communication skills. It is for these reasons that I find the programme truly inspiring.”

Yorkshire and the Midlands:

Felicity Houlbrooke

“I joined First Give in 2017 and love the privilege of being part of it. As a trained actor, I hugely enjoy being able to help young people find their own confidence through performing and public speaking. It’s wonderful to see students realise the huge impact their creativity and passion can have through social action whilst at school, and then carry that energy and belief with them into their adult lives. One of the most brilliant things about working with First Give is seeing the achievements of young people being celebrated in their communities with such encouragement and pride.”

Georgie Porter

“I joined First Give in October 2023. I have taught in schools across West Yorkshire as well as internationally, in Singapore, since 2013. Most recently I was leading on Global Citizenship and Student Leadership for a global international school group and was keen to continue this work in the UK. I was drawn to train as a First Give facilitator because of their focus on student agency and empowering young people to work in collaboration with their wider community. I think social action is an incredibly powerful tool to show students they can make a meaningful difference, even on a small scale, and hopefully this can inspire them to keep advocating for social change throughout their lives.”

Wales and the West:

Non Rhys

“I have a background in policy and campaigns for a variety of organisations, and hope to inspire young people to take action locally on issues that they feel strongly about, as well as support them to gain valuable presentation skills and experience.”