Creating Space is our first in-house social impact initiative of the year

Also believed to be the first programme of its kind to offer a free to access coaching service to support
teacher wellbeing across the UK.

The launch of the pilot went live mid-March(2021), with additional in-takes already underway. We partnered
with award-winning education charity Yes Futures, to invest our skills and energies into empowering
teachers as they navigate these challenging times.

Why did Animas develop Creating Space?

Creating Space was designed in response to findings from the latest Teacher Wellbeing Index which highlights a high level of teacher stress caused by pandemic uncertainty, increased workload from remote learning and lack of safe space to communicate any issues or problems.

Our Head of Social Impact, Emma Koubayssi, said: “We have over 3000 trained coaches within our ecosystem, many of whom are teachers or parents and are passionate about supporting our educators. Teachers play a vital role within our communities and when we read the research we knew we had to take action.

“Yes Futures were an obvious partner for the programme. Not only is the charity well-established, run by experienced, qualified teachers who specialise in supporting the outcomes of students but we are aligned in many of our values and vision of wanting to improve opportunities and the future of young people. Yes Futures is well known to our community many who have volunteered for their youth coaching initiatives in the past, so the pairing made real sense to us.”

We caught up with Sarah Sewell, CEO of Yes Futures, who said: “As a teacher myself, I know how challenging the job can be; particularly over the last year where things have totally turned on their heads.

“Many schools are struggling and teachers need increased support if they are to push through to the end of the crisis without a significant impact on their wellbeing. They need the space to develop their skills for teaching, learning and life.“

What happens in Creating Space

The virtual programme consists of six (6) 50-minute, one-to-one coaching sessions – offering a safe space for dialogue and thinking where teachers can benefit from impartial professional support and speak openly about any areas of their life, both personal and professional. These sessions either take place weekly or fortnightly.

Emma continues: “We’re uniquely positioned, given our experience and standing within the coaching industry as well as our expertise within education, to orchestrate Creating Space, a coaching programme which will deliver real impact for our school communities.”

Of course, an equally important facet of the programme is that Animas coaches also benefit from being a part of Creating Space. Coaches receive a full induction and onboarding, supervision sessions, an opportunity to improve their skills and a chance to contribute to meaningful work.

An overwhelming number of the coaches in the pilot specifically mentioned three things that made them sign-up for the programme:

Impact

The opportunity to give back and help the teachers navigate their way through what may be considered as difficult and trying times and make a positive impact

Improvement

The opportunity to refine their coaching skills, while at the same time being able to help improve the mental health and wellbeing of the teachers

Importance

The opportunity to be a part of a programme that is the first of its kind where coaches from diverse backgrounds and fields of expertise can come together as one coaching community to support teacher wellbeing and mental health

The pilot wave of Creating Space is still underway with support from our UK and international cohort of coaches.

Our Impact

We will be sharing the initial findings of our pilot programme in early July