The What If Academy is a young people centered not for profit training organisation whose vision focuses solely on the belief that young people have an infinite potential.
The What If Academy believes that every young person can make positive choices for themselves given the correct training, tools and guidance. Ultimately these positive choices will empower, enable and encourage young people to make healthy, safe, positive decisions, which will benefit not only themselves and their immediate circle but society as a whole.
We deliver the type of personal development programmes to young people for free that are commercially available for individuals to purchase for thousands of pounds. Young people do not typically consider financially investing in their own development after participating in traditional, informative education for many years. Many of them have debt and most of them believe that they will never own their own home. The majority of young people we work with come from the poorest communities in our society, however, all young adults are welcome to attend our programmes.
The What If Academy delivers training to young people that focuses on difficult areas of their lives. We do not shy away from the difficult issues or situations young people bring. We embrace these difficulties as the first step to moving forward towards a positive future. We teach them ways of making life better. It isn’t magic but rather experiential learning processes that are taught during our unique training courses. We also offer individual and bespoke training in this area.
What If?... Young people were able to learn that anything was possible?
What If?... Young people communicated in a way that maximised engagement and understanding?
What If?... Young people created a world that worked for everyone?
What If?... Young people understood themselves and why they make the choices they make?
What If?... Young people recognised that they were the masters of their universe?
What If?... Young people believed in themselves?
The What If Academy’s programmes address these questions, transforms the limiting beliefs young people hold about themselves and allows them to step into a future where their hopes, dreams and ambitions can be realised. We do not make this statement lightly and we confidently state that all of these outcomes are possible through their participation in our programmes.
We are passionate about motivating, inspiring and raising the aspirations of young people. Our courses train young people in the essential skills they need to move forward in their lives towards realising their infinite potential.
Sarah Parry MSc BSc (Hons) / Founder and CEO
Sarah has worked in charities and for the public sector for the past 18 years. Working within the most deprived communities in London, Sarah has been committed to transforming the lives of young people and the practice of professionals throughout her career. Sarah created The What If Academy to fulfil on her commitment of ensuring that every young person in the world has the opportunity to live a life they love. Sarah is responsible for programme design and delivery; she is the lead trainer and facilitates the group training and coaching sessions. Sarah manages our consultancy projects and deals with the day to day running of the organisation.
Colleen Humphrey LLB (Law) Cert. Management / Board Chair
Colleen has worked in the voluntary sector for thirty years. The journey to The What If Academy includes working in Youth Homelessness, Urban Regeneration, Advice and Advocacy. Currently, Colleen is Deputy Chief Executive of an award winning, large national advocacy organisation. Working closely with the CEO, Colleen is responsible for shaping strategy and leading development and performance across The What If Academy.
Colleen is committed to providing all young people with the tools, skills and knowledge to live a fulfilled life where they set and achieve goals, love their community and themselves.
Mauva Adams FMAAT / Board Director and Treasurer
Mauva is a qualified accountant who has over 19 year's experience working in the not-for-profit and charity sectors. Mauva drives her own accountancy practice which enables her to help people grow their businesses. A care leaver herself and being a board director of The What If Academy is Mauva's way of contributing to transforming the lives of young people
Adeline Addruse BA (Hons) / Board Director and Secretary
Before becoming a full-time mother in 2010 when her first child was born, Adeline worked in the corporate sector as a financial institutions insurance broker. The What If Academy allows Adeline to contribute to her stand that the well-being and safety of young people is never compromised whilst living a wonderful life that they want and have chosen. Adeline is also a singer and guitarist, and she writes songs of the 'FRock' genre. She is currently recording her debut EP under her stage name Meet George Brown.
Michael Vincent BA (Hons) / Board Director
Michael has worked a significant proportion of his career in the social welfare charity sector, most notably for the homelessness charity Crisis where he has helped recruit and train thousands of volunteers for the annual Crisis at Christmas project. A trained social anthropologist, Michael has been supporting the What If Academy to develop a monitoring and evaluation framework to track the progress of new and existing programmes.
Freya Rawling / Board Director
Freya currently works as part of the Mayor’s Peer Outreach Team; a diverse team who work to promote participation in young people by voicing their opinions on key issues; and collaborating with them, different charities and organisations on youth led events. As a result of her own life experiences, Freya is focused on creating positive, social change, particularly for young people, through her personal and professional life.
Kat Wojcik /Brand Ambassador
It was over six years ago that Kat met Sarah when she was briefed to create a brand identity for an amazing enterprise called What If. She has since helped create this website alongside other much needed collateral. Kat has spent the past ten years working in the design industry with the last four spent working in a more freelance capacity. This affords her the flexibility and freedom to offer her skills to worthwhile causes such as The What If Academy allowing her to play her part in creating positive, social change. www.katwojcik.com