Our impact

Fifteen years of impact 

Having been founded in 2008, in the fifteen years since, we’ve built a comprehensive monitoring and evaluation framework. We track self-reported measures of knowledge, skills, confidence and networks before and after for each current participant and – through our alumni activity and ongoing research – we track our longer-term impact. From this we know:

  • We’ve supported 4,893 young people since 2008. Across our alumni, 60.3% of whom identify as Black, Asian or minority ethnic, 61.5% are women and 58.4% identify as belonging to a faith. A third of participants have shared socioeconomic information with us and from this we know that 40.3% received free school meals or were the first in their family to go to university. 
  • Over the long-term, participants report a 15% increase in confidence, a 22% increase in their skills, a 25% increase in their knowledge and a 39% increase in their networks. 
  • Our young people have engaged nearly 20,000 individuals in their communities through social action campaigns and through our democratic engagement work nationwide. 

The Cabinet Office commissioned respected independent think-tank DEMOS8 to undertake an independent evaluation of the medium and long-term impact of our work. DEMOS found that the programme “significantly improved leadership, networking and advocacy skills”:

  • 68% of participants gaining employment through the programme
  • 17% went on to set-up a social enterprises or businesses 
  • 52% taking on a role of leadership since completing one of the programmes
  • 1 in 4 participants serve as a Trustee/member of a board



An independent review of UpRising’s programmes by Demos in 2016 found that we “significantly improve the leadership, networking and advocacy skills of young people” and that our programmes have, “the potential to rapidly improve young people’s life chances, unravelling years with the odds stacked against them.”

Many of our alumni have gone on to achieve great outcomes, moving into the fields of law, media, politics, finance, teaching, charity and enterprise with successes including: an alumni being selected as a “30 under 30” social entrepreneur; a homeless young person to The Guardian journalist; an ex-offender to House of Commons intern; a Mayor of London Office employee; an Obama Fellow for exemplary civic leadership; an ethical fashion designer and a think-tank founder. We are so proud of the impact we have had and continue to have on young people's lives. 


Wider impact and change-making

Our Theory of Change means that when a young person takes part in an UpRising programme, they are taking part in an opportunity that will continue to support them for the rest of their lives. We are passionate not only about empowering young people to make a change, but to become changemakers, who go on to drive positive change across a wide range of sectors and scales. 


Immediate impact 

Directly during and after taking part in an UpRising programme, cohorts of young people consistently report an improvement in all areas of our Theory of Change, with positive developments in their Skills, Knowledge, Confidence, Networks and Well-being. 


Mid and long-term impact 

In the months and years following participation in one of our programmes, UpRisers have reported and demonstrated their UpRising experience as having a much wider impact, with evidence of UpRising's impact visible across all of the below areas of change and development:

  • Environmental - UpRising’s impact on the environment. This could be either a physical environmental impact (such as significantly reducing CO2 commissions, clearing waterways or reducing waste) or could be a more strategic environmental impact, for example supporting an organisation to develop more sustainable policies and practices. Examples include Sion, Maria and John.  
  • Systemic change - UpRising’s impact on the way the wider world functions and develops. Examples include Bobby. 
  • Societal change - UpRising’s impact on the way people and communities think and behave. 
  • Community impact - UpRising’s impact on the way a community/ies operate and interact. Examples include Daniel, Bobby
  • Personal impact - UpRising’s impact on the life of the person themselves, the way they interact with the world around them. Examples include Cathy, Daniel.
  • Social mobility - UpRising’s impact on a person's socio-economic situation, either in relation to their parents (inter-generational mobility) or throughout their lifetime (intra-generational mobility). Examples include Cathy, Eireann, Lexie and Dominika.
  • Well-being - UpRising’s impact on a person’s well-being, through an improvement in confidence, well-being, motivation and connectedness with the world around them. Examples include Lexie and Dominika.
  • Leadership - UpRising’s impact on the wider leadership landscape across different sectors and levels, from community leadership to political leadership, and everything in between. Examples include Najma, Anis, Finn and Sion.