Why we exist

Every individual deserves a chance. No one should be hindered because of where they grew up or the school they went to. At MyBigCareer, we are determined to break down barriers to social mobility and make a difference to young people’s lives.


Our Mission

Our mission is to provide free one-to-one career guidance to young people from disadvantaged backgrounds and to break down barriers to social mobility. Our advice is delivered by professionally qualified advisers volunteering from within the independent sector. These individuals are motivated by their shared passion for making career and educational opportunities available to all – regardless of background, affluence or connections.

“I welcome the dedication of MyBigCareer to help young people realise their ambitions through further study or work.” – Nick Clegg, MP

“MyBigCareer is an excellent charity keen to make sure that all young people get the best informed careers advice whether or not their parents can pay for it. I am delighted to have worked with MyBigCareer from the outset and that it has chosen to start its work in Hackney, with an office base in one of our secondary schools.” – Meg Hillier, MP Hackney South and Shoreditch

“The charity provides much needed face to face guidance for the most disadvantaged, aiming to break down barriers and promote social mobility.” – The Rt Hon. Sir Vincent Cable

“MyBigCareer is a charity with an excellent idea of what is needed to help provide school children with the help and guidance required to get them into their chosen careers or further study.” – Simon Hughes

“I am very impressed by the project. Seeking to improve careers access for less fortunate young people is both an important and wholly commendable initiative, and I wish Deborah and MyBigCareer every success.” – Graham Stuart, MP

“Deborah has given me advice on what University would be good for me and has given invaluable assistance with the LNAT test. When discussing my personal statement she has aided me with legal terminology despite that not being her field of expertise she found a way to help me.” – Jesse Williams, Student

“Deborah has given me a lot of confidence and in such a short time she has made a great contribution to my University application process” – Emmanuel Farine, Student

“I have found Deborah’s support and advice with my personal statement very helpful and effective. With her I’ve also identified ways to improve my writing.” – Joan Lawal, Student

“In our context, the challenge is always to make our students believe more in themselves and stop thinking that the best opportunities are for others and not them. MyBigCareer went straight to the heart of this and raised our students’ sights in a single conversation. It’s a vital first step in taking charge of their futures.”– Peter Brown, former Principal of Top Valley Academy, Nottingham

”I would just like to say thank you again for meeting with Beth and me today, Deborah. The information and advice you have given I know will be invaluable and Beth said she feels far less despondent about the future. That in itself is worth its weight in gold to me. ”– a Parent

”MyBigCareer offers students the opportunity to meet with professionals from their chosen career when this opportunity is not readily available through school, family or social connections….The opportunity to participate in a mock interview through the charity ensures students from disadvantaged backgrounds arrive at the formal interview on a more equal footing with other candidates.”– Caroline Richardson Consultant Oncoplastic Breast Surgeon

”I provided constructive support and helped build their confidence in their abilities….I also encouraged them to be proud of their achievements and not to sell themselves short in their Personal Statements. I hope this will stand them in good stead in the Medical School applications process…..MyBigCareer provides an important link for current professionals to the new generation of young minds that will join and eventually replace them, and it is within our power to guide them and help streamline the journey.”– Mrs Rachel Howes, MBChB MRCS DMCC Surgical Trainee, CT2 Burns & Plastic Surgery

“The mentoring programme (as facilitated by MyBigCareer) has been very insightful and helpful for our students. The depth and knowledge that the mentors have given my students has impressed me and I’m certain that this will have a positive influence on future career decisions.”– John Egan, Career Guidance Manager, Cardinal Pole Catholic School

“I am desperately looking for some help and advice with career options for my daughter. She is currently studying for her A levels but is unsure what her options are if she doesn’t want to go to university. I find minimal, patchy and often conflicting ”advice” on the websites that her (state) school has directed us towards and beyond this, the school has offered nothing! Can you help? ”– Cathy, a Parent, Bedfordshire

“Deborah’s knowledge and professionalism brought an amazing insight into the mysteries of UCAS statements and the Oxbridge myths for the students. They left the room noticeably more confident – so a huge thank you from all of us. ”– Lin Proctor, Raising Aspirations Director, Pimlico Academy

“My daughter is 16 and has just completed her GCSEs. Unfortunately she did not have any careers advice at school so we were looking for a little assistance. I am appalled and also angry at myself for not acting sooner.”– Parent

A few statistics we are trying to change

million under 24 year olds are out of work
% of university places are filled by disadvantaged candidates
% of students are enrolled in independent education, yet over half of medics attended private schools
% of 16-24 year olds are unemployed

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Tim Blackman

Nice o'view from @UniversitiesUK but ignores how socially segregated our unis are; socialmobility not socialjustice? universitiesuk.ac.uk/policy-a…


Tel 020 7409 5162

Learn more about the charity and the people behind it

MyBigCareer was launched because of our concern about a lack of independent careers advice for young people – a key factor in boosting social mobility.

In recent times, various schemes have emerged, including centrally-funded Aim Higher projects and the EMA, which was aimed at post-16 retention. Funding for these programmes is no longer available.

Deborah Streatfield, founder of MyBigCareer, is a careers consultant, who has provided personalised support and advice to students for more than 25 years. She currently works with a diverse range of clients including families of students seeking specialist advice on a retained basis as well as homeless people looking for a path to a fairly paid job, an education and a career. Deborah provides guidance across GCSE and A-level choices, university admission applications, and vocational courses leading to trade and professional occupations.

Funding for the charity comes from philanthropic organisations sharing goals in common with our mission and the corporate sector. Donations are most welcome.

The charity’s patron, Sir Vince Cable, is working hard to secure further funding.

Our Trustees

Deborah Streatfield

Ann Fossey

Dr Carlos Gomez

Helen McAleer

Sandi Simons

Vince Pizzoni

Our Supporters


Royal College of Surgeons
Hackney Learning Trust
Speakers 4 Schools
Hackney Learning Trust
Conde Nast Britain
The Journalism Diversity Fund
The National Council for the Training of Journalists
The University of Manchester



We would also like to thank the following for their continued support and endorsement of MyBigCareer:


Carole Stone, CBE

I am delighted to be a ‘supporter’ of MyBigCareer.

MyBigCareer was founded under Deborah Streatfield’s leadership in 2013. The charity has the hugely important, indeed essential, aim to break down the barriers to social mobility by helping underprivileged young people realise their potential through the delivery of one-to-one careers guidance. Raising young people’s aspirations and supporting students as they progress onto further education, including university, or the workplace is invaluable. The work is totally voluntary and there is no charge to schools.

MyBigCareer needs careers advisers to help disadvantaged young people to find the right progression route.
And it needs people from business who will take the time to share their experience and expertise in the workplace to advise these young people on the area of work in which they are interested. It needs people who will listen and act and who care.

I have observed what Deborah Streatfield is achieving through the charity since it started and have been heartened by the work it does and the help it gives young people at such a crucial time in their life. I will do my best to raise awareness of this immensely worthwhile work. MyBigCareeer deserves to grow for both the sake of the young people who need help and for the good of society.


The Rt Hon the Baroness Liddell of Coatdyke, PC LLD

I am a bus driver’s daughter from a working class community in the West of Scotland. An inspiring education in a State school with teachers who had a true vocation, and a Head Teacher who would not settle for second best , unleashed a world of opportunity that took me to University, Parliament, the Cabinet and The Privy Council as well as the Diplomatic Service. I am not alone: my classmates went on to become Cabinet ministers and High Court judges, surgeons and engineers, all from homes where we were the first in our families to go to University.

When you are given chances like that, when you see how a really good education can unleash unlimited opportunity, you have a duty to do what you can to ensure others get the same opportunities.

That is why I support MyBigCareer.

Contact us

We’d really love to hear from you. Please call 020 7409 5162 or email us and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

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