Un Avenir Ensemble (A Future Together), a foundation with legal recognition of public utility, offers members the opportunity to engage with deserving underprivileged youths to help them complete their education and become integrated into professional life.
The foundation, chaired by the Grand Chancellor of the Legion of Honor, has three main objectives:
- Fostering social mobility and contributing to societal cohesion by forging links of solidarity between generations and different socio-economic backgrounds.
- Helping to promote the concept of merit in society.
- Strengthening honorees’ actions in serving as role models promoting the education and professional training of young people.
Specific action: mentorship
The foundation connects honorees and deserving youths who are hindered in their ambitions and projects by an unfavorable socio-cultural environment. This mentor-mentee relationship (known as "godparent-godchild” in French) is for the long term: from lycée (upper-level secondary school) to professional integration.
- Mentors are members of the Legion of Honor who volunteer to continue their civic engagement in a project of national public interest. Mentors serve as role models for the future, offering moral guidance and support in everyday life: with the backing of the foundation, they guide their mentees in their choices of educational direction and help them define and build their career paths. They open up "the path of the possible" to them.
They offer guidance for the long-term and pass on values, savoir-faire and interpersonal skills, social codes of conduct that will help their mentees to fulfill their role as citizens. Mentors serve as "social facilitators".
- Mentees are voluntary lycée students identified by educational authorities who partner in the program.
The mentoring is governed by a tripartite agreement between the foundation represented by the mentor, the mentee and his or her family, and the school.
The foundation, present throughout the duration of the mentoring through its network of volunteers in relevant fields and partners (companies, non-profit organizations advises, facilitates, steers and coordinates the mentors and mentees.
To allow mentees to pursue their studies under good conditions, the foundation deploys a unique, personalized financial aid mechanism, based on the joint responsibility of the mentee and the foundation.
Resources are exclusively private:
- An initial endowment of €3 million, established in 2009 thanks to the commitment of companies and private sponsors;
- Gifts and bequests from 15,000 honorees and contributions from partner companies (corporate sponsorship, apprenticeship tax, patronage...).
675 active mentorships throughout France
Target: 1,200 by 2020
71 partner companies
8 years: average duration of mentorship
280 lycées (upper-level secondary schools) throughout France