Oxford: City of Contrasts

When most people think of Oxford, they think of the university and the prosperity. This is the city that educated our prime ministers, hosted our most famous authors, and is now the most unaffordable place to live in the UK.

So, it’s a surprise to most people when they find out that over 5,000 young people here live in child poverty.

Walk around the centre of Oxford and you’ll see the famous sights: the Ashmolean Museum, the Bodleian Library, the University colleges.

But look at the buses that are leaving the city centre. They’re travelling to places like Barton, Blackbird Leys, Rose Hill, Wood Farm – areas of deprivation, placed at the end of the bus routes, fenced off from the rest of the city.

1 in 4 children here attend private school. And 1 in 4 children grow up below the poverty line. This is truly a city of contrasts.

OxfordUniversity(1200x1200)Did you know that a boy born in the Barton estate can expect to live eight years less than if he was born on the other side of the ring road in Headington?

Did you know that Oxford, a city world-famous for its university, has whole communities where 1 in 3 adults have no qualifications, and has areas where up to 75% of young people are leaving school without English and Maths GCSEs?

This is a city where it seems like where you are born, defines who you are.

That’s why Thrive Teams are here. Because, like so many people reading this, we believe that young people growing up in Oxfordshire’s disadvantaged communities have just as much potential as anyone else to bring about change – in their own lives and also in their community.

Find out more about why we’re here

What others are saying about Thrive

“I have known Thrive and the work it does for and with disadvantaged young people in Barton and Blackbird Leys for many years. Its enthusiastic young team, allied to its sound governance and long term approach, have made a significant difference to the lives of many whose prospects and opportunities would otherwise have been very poor. It is excellent that their model and work have now been extended into Abingdon. It is an organisation that richly deserves philanthropic support to both continue and expand its work.”

Tim Stevenson OBE, Lord Lieutenant of Oxfordshire