Jazibah Ziarab, a Theology and Religious Studies student at the University of Leeds, has been balancing her studies with supporting pupils at Horton Grange Primary School in Bradford. She has become the first former Mosaic mentee to become a mentor, having been mentored herself on Mosaic’s Secondary School programme when in Year 10 at Belle Vue Girls’ School, also in Bradford.
Jazibah was in attendance at a pair of special ceremonies recently held at Leeds Trinity University to watch the pupils she mentored graduate from the Primary School programme. They were joined by pupils from Dixons Marchbank Primary School, Fagley Primary School, Field Lane Primary School, Hillcrest Primary School and St Matthews C of E Primary School. The events featured keynote speeches from Laura Boocock, Station Commander at West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service; and Irna Qureshi, Co-Director of the Bradford Literature Festival.
Jazibah said: “It was fantastic to see the pupils graduate. When I started mentoring they were very quiet and reserved, but after just a few sessions it was noticeable that many had become much more open to speaking in front of the whole class. We did a group activity where we picked two of the quietest girls to be spokespeople. It was amazing how they got up and spoke in front of the whole class with so much confidence.
“I remember when I was 14 when our teachers told us we would be taking part in Mosaic’s mentoring programme to help us with our employability skills and confidence. I was so aloof before starting, had no intention of going into higher education and didn’t know what career I was interested in. But afterwards that all changed. Now I feel so much better and more composed as a person. There hasn’t been one interview that I’ve been to where it hasn’t been successful.”
Leah Larkin, Mosaic’s Yorkshire Regional Manager, said: “This is a very special moment for everyone at Mosaic. Not only is it proof that the work we carry out in schools is highly effective, but Jazibah’s story is the vision His Royal Highness had when he founded the charity. We’re thrilled that Jazibah is using the skills she learned as a mentee to inspire the next generation of students in Yorkshire.”
The graduation events were made possible by the generous support of Human Appeal, People’s Postcode Lottery and Leeds Trinity University.