Free Career Coaching For Working Class People – applications open

The Right Ethos are offering free Career Coaching sessions for working class individuals right at the start of their career – under 26 and who have never had paid work in the sector.

Please address the following questions and email them to me along with your CV at

You don’t have to answer YES to all of the first 3 questions to qualify, but your answers will help us to assess :

  1. Was all of your education between the age of 5-18 in a state school?
  2. Did you receive free school dinners? If yes, for how many years? 
  3. Did you live in council housing under the age of 18? If yes, for how many years?
  4. Are there any other reasons why you may deserve free Career Coaching?
  5. What role would you like to be doing in 5 years time and who would you ideally like to work for?
  6. What is year were you born?
  7. Have you ever had paid employment in the charity sector?

Why are we doing this?

By Jonathan Dearth, Director 

The Right Ethos is 17 years old in 2024. And since the start, we have always had keen inexperienced, or no experienced individuals, looking to break into the campaigns and external affairs sector.

It was clear that these people didn’t know where to start their careers, but with a little bit of guidance could focus their efforts and get themselves on the first rung of the career ladder. So, we started offering Career Coaching. We have done this not as a money-making exercise, it’s less than 1% of our income, but as a service – we basically break even on it.

And I’m particularly keen to help those from a working class background. I lived on a council estate as a young child, had free school dinners at times and a full grant to go to university.

And I recall back in 1993 when I started volunteering in Shelter’s public affairs team – we didn’t call it anything as glamorous as an “internship” back then. The first intern I remember was Monica Lewinsky and she didn’t become known until the end of the nineties. I was understandably naive and just didn’t understand how to do interviews and failed badly. No-one I knew when I was growing up had worked in office jobs, let alone the charity and campaigning sector. I had kind support of experienced Shelter colleagues with my CV and applications. The late Iain Pigg, who managed me and also Ben Summerskill, who went on to be the Chief Executive of Stonewall.

It is this kind support that Iain and Ben offered me that I now wish to replicate for  working class individuals looking to break into the campaigns and communications sector.


Natasha Mpofu, then a student in Manchester received a free coaching session. She gave the following feedback:

“Thank you for taking the time out to impart wisdom and advice. I had no clear idea of what I wanted to achieve in the future just that I wanted to work in Policy, outside of Parliament and Whitehall. The chat we had really affirmed my career goals and has been influential in mapping out my next steps in attempting to achieve these goals. 

The advice I received about networking on Linkedin and how to structure my messages  was extremely valuable and a tactic I had neglected in the past due to a lack of confidence. You have empowered me to feel confident enough to start messaging people today. You helped me to understand the value of using this social networking site in a positive manner that can provide me with skills and opportunities further down the line. 

Our conversation on storytelling to answer interview questions finally clicked all the previous advice I had been given about interviews as it will allow me to structure conversations during the interview process differently. 

Finally, I would like to say I truly appreciate the  opportunity to gain free coaching from yourself as coming from a working class background, I don’t have a lot of people to seek career advice to so this experience was invaluable. I will make sure to implement all of the recommendations we spoke about today.” 

Charities failing to prioritise class diversity of employees (April 2024)

Social Mobility in the Charity Sector (April 2024)

Working-class people ‘underrepresented in charity sector for too long’, says Teach First  (November 2023)

Socioeconomic status is a real barrier in the charity sector’  (January 2023)

How to Crack the Class Ceiling  (BBC iPlayer –  December 2022)

Class in the Charity Sector (August 2022)

Listen to BBC Radio 4’s – The Bottom Line programme entitled: Class In The Workplace

About The Right Ethos

The Right Ethos was set up after our founder, Jonathan Dearth, had worked in the campaigning sector for 13 years, for campaigning organisations including Amnesty International, Shelter, Liberty and the World Development Movement. It was set up as a response to multi-sector recruitment consultancies moving in on the charity sector, and in particular not recognising that people who work for campaigning organisations are motivated by justice and long term change.