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R.E.A.L. Success for Xander – A truly International Citizen!

Xander and his family have been friends with R.E.A.L. for 6 years now, and we are all so pleased that his life is really coming together and proud to share some part of this young man’s incredible journey…

Xander began life with R.E.A.L. when his transition to secondary school broke down due to personal circumstances. R.E.A.L. were asked to support and stabilise his education and re-engage Xander back into learning.

“We were introduced to R.E.A.L. and it proved to be an absolute blessing for us. A lot of the pressure was taken off our shoulders, Alexander was supported and it’s led from success to success. All the hard work his tutors put in and support they gave to Xander enabled him to achieve his GCSE’s and move onto 6th form college.” James O’Riodan, Xander’s father.

With hard work and determination, Xander excelled in his ‘A’ levels gaining ‘A’ and ‘B’ grades and then applied to Queen Mary’s London University to read Politics and International Relations. Not wanting to take a well-earned break, and always wanting to help others, Xander will be visiting Africa for 3 months to work with a business in Kampala and promote self-sustainability for everyone involved.

“The Trip is run by a charity called Challenges Worldwide but it is part of a larger initiative overseen by the Department for International Development called International Citizen Service. I have been working with National Citizen Service, a related programme for under 18s, for over a year now since first participating in it during the summer of 2015.”

“I’ll be staying in Kampala for 3 months with a host family and working alongside a Ugandan volunteer. We will work alongside a small/ medium local business: observing it and then creating a plan which we will then implement in order to boost the strength of the business and ensure a good wage for people involved. The idea is to promote self-sustainability.”

Sean Ryan, a former director of R.E.A.L. Education and now a trustee, was pleased to be able to present the cheque to Xander and wished him well on the next steps in his life. “Xander is a shining light for many other students within R.E.A.L. and has proven that an approach to ‘Re-think Engagement and Approaches to Learning’, really can impact the lives of young people.”
Find out more about the R.E.A.L. Foundation Trust www.realft.org

“I’m grateful to R.E.A.L. for their generous donation and would like to thank Judy and Sean who presented the cheque from the Terry Keely bursary. It has made a huge impact on my fundraising. I’m really looking forward to living and working in Uganda and experiencing something new. Thanks for making it possible, and thank you to everyone at R.E.A.L. who helped me to get to this stage in my life.”

The Terry Keely bursary has been set up by R.E.A.L. to help support learners in areas of need. The late Terry Keely was one of the founding members of the trust. His wife Judy said “Terry would be very proud knowing the bursary was supporting such as good cause.”

Xander has nearly reached his fundraising target of £800 with the help of 25 supporters so far. Please visit his JustGiving page and add your support today. https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Alexander-ORiordan