In 2012, our friends at O2 embarked on a mission. In a bid to help people and planet, the team aimed, through youth programmes like GoThinkBig and O2 Think Big, to help 1 million young people develop skills for life and lead community projects across the UK. And they’ve only gone and done it!
That’s right, O2’s youth programmes have supported a whopping 1,044,024 young people to gain and develop skills.
Over 900,000 of you guys have gained new skills through GoThinkBig, whether that’s from the tools, opportunities and advice on the website, or rubbing shoulders with the likes of Rizzle Kicks and music legend Nile Rodgers, all in the name of work experience.
Through O2 Think Big, 5,755 project leaders have been given a grand total of £2,911,500 to address the problems that affect their communities and use tech to solve them. Plus, since 2012, 106,468 young people have led or been involved in social action projects to help their communities.
We’re not one for a humble brag, so instead we’ve gone full on “in-your-face-brag” and created an entire report to show off all of the amazing things we’ve achieved in the last few years, as well as share some of your very inspiring stories.
Whether you’ve been with us from the very start, or you’ve only just stumbled across GoThinkBig on a recent quest to find some work experience, let’s take a trip down memory lane and have a look at some of our highlights…
March: Think Big hit telly screens around the UK when O2 showcased the programme in its ‘Things are #changing’ advert, calling for more young people with big community-changing ideas to apply for funding to kick start a social action project.
October: GoThinkBig was born! In a bid to battle youth unemployment, our website went live, bringing careers advice and inspiration, and offering you guys more than 30,000 work-related opportunities in three years.
November: Think Big Tour kicked off to celebrate all the hard work of thousands of project leaders who worked tirelessly to improve their communities. Headliners included; Rita Ora, Noisettes, Rudimental, Tinchy Stryder, Sway and Chipmunk (no biggie!).
April: GoThinkBig signed up heaps more business partners in April, to bring you lot an even bigger range of work experience placements, insight days and masterclasses to take part in. Huge names like; Channel 4, Reed Smith, MediaCom, The Marketing Academy, Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen and more got on board.
July: GoThinkBig recruited 100 of you guys to work on Rizzle Kicks’ ‘Lost Generation’ music video. Participants were involved every step of the way, from building the set, to starring in it, to making the video look amazing in post-production.
November: O2 promised to support HRH the Prince of Wales’ Step Up To Serve campaign, which aims to double the number of young people involved in social action projects by 2020. The O2 team made an #iwill pledge to back 10,000 youth social action ideas and reach an extra 50,000 through Think Big by the same year.
March: We opened the Think Big Hub in London’s so that young people could have somewhere to come to learn digital skills, get advice, and run and attend events. It’s also our office, and where we keep a lot of snacks, so it’s basically the best place ever.
September: 70 recruits got the once in a lifetime opportunity to work alongside chart-toppers Rudimental and music legend Nile Rodgers thanks to GoThinkBig. The team got to remix CHIC’s disco classic ‘Le Freak’, make and star in a music video, and put on a gig which saw Nile and young people take to the stage.
October: TEDxTeen ventured outside of North America for the first time ever in 2014! 500 young people went along to indigo at The O2 to hear inspirational teens talk about ‘remarkable disruptors’ and have a chat about using tech to drive change.
June: O2 joined forces with Jonny Wilkinson and Jason Robinson, as well as amazing Rugby charities; School of Hard Knocks, Saracens Foundation and Bath Rugby Foundation to create the ultimate CV-boosting opportunity. Young people got training on how to coach touch rugby, and helped to run local rugby events. Plus, they were also given access to shadowing opportunities, advice from industry professionals and funding to launch their own local projects.
September: Three crews of young people got the chance to walk the red carpet to see their own films screened at the BFI London Film Festival in September, when they were selected to write, film and produce their own shorts, inspired by the Suffragette rally cry: ‘The Time Is Now!’
November: Think Big launched Gro app with O2 and Do-it.org at the end of 2015. The app lets you translate all the skills that you pick up during volunteering and translate them into ‘career speak’ to add to your CV.
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