News and views Going for growth in Yorkshire & North East By Janet Skeen, Beanstalk Area Manager Made up of three distinct areas, North East, Yorkshire and the Humber region, our aim is to grow Beanstalk service in all three areas this year – we do like a challenge! In the North East we are excited about many new developments, Julie will be working in partnership with virtual schools in Sunderland supporting looked after children. Stockton Soroptimists have agreed to champion our service by spreading the word and helping with the recruitment of volunteers in the Tees Valley. In Yorkshire, the whole team will be involved in road shows where our focus will be to generate as many ‘quality’ enquiries as we can, and Lorraine, our Recruitment and Training Executive, is leading on the development of a project team of volunteers who will champion the sharing of good practice amongst their peers. In the Humber region we have two corporate schemes with AB Ports, one in Hull and another in Grimsby. Our ‘lone ranger’ Mandy supports both corporates and is busy building up both areas with a real focus on Hull. Our real focus for the summer term will be to continue to build upon new relationships, widen our links and market Beanstalk. The summer term will also see the launch of the Employer Sponsorship Programme – again with support from the fundraising team, we will look to employers to support their community schools in areas of high deprivation and where the schools are facing financial hardship. We may be a widespread team but supported by amazing volunteers we couldn’t ask for anything more … except - of course - for more of the same! If you'd like to become a trained reading helper in Yorkshire or the North East, then please do get in touch with us!