The Immobel Engagement Fund supports many associations in the fields of social inclusion, culture, health and education*. Among them is Schola ULB, an institution dedicated to fostering educational support and creating change through the art of tutoring. We speak to its inspiring leader, Kseniya Yasinska, a philology specialist with a unique journey that led her to the helm of this impactful initiative.

Originally from Ukraine, Kseniya began by teaching French at the Kyiv National Linguistic University and the French Institute of Ukraine. Her trajectory took a significant turn when she moved to Paris in 2010, where she was head of a national federation specialising in linguistic and educational travel experiences. Ten years later, in Brussels, she assumed the management of Schola ULB, with its innovative tutoring programme at its heart.

Schola ULB was born within the Université libre de Bruxelles in the 1980s following a request for tutoring from a Brussels school. Fifteen years later, the association received recognition from UNESCO. Kseniya traces Schola ULB’s evolution, from exclusive focus on secondary students to embracing primary and vocational education in 2011. Later on, the organisation adapted to the digital age during the Covid-19 pandemic, when it offered hybrid and remote tutoring sessions to ensure continuity in its mission.

Today, the association boasts a network of 130 partner institutions, ranging from primary and secondary schools to local support structures like community centres. Its strength lies in its diverse community. As Kseniya emphasises: “We’re not just an association; we’re a community. Our partners in education, diverse tutors and even governmental support contribute to the tapestry of Schola ULB.”

The organisation’s success is not just measured in numbers; it’s reflected in many ways among the students and tutors. Kseniya: “The tutoring goes beyond building self-confidence; it's about imparting knowledge and teaching students how to learn. Our commitment to equal opportunities ensures that students, especially the vulnerable ones, benefit from tutoring free of charge.”

The youth-led approach, with an average tutor age of 22, pairs young tutors with their peers, creating a comfortable environment for questions and learning. Tutors are students in higher education, who serve as role models and older siblings who have successfully completed their secondary education. This fosters a sense of closeness, identification and effectiveness in tutoring thanks to the shared learning environment, teacher expectations and exam pressures.

The programme also fosters the personal and professional growth of its tutors. As Kseniya proudly says: “Our tutors, motivated by civic responsibility, discover leadership skills, improved public speaking and enhanced responsibility through the tutoring experience. This becomes an asset on their resumes, with 90% acknowledging the value it adds.”

The organisation’s achievements are acknowledged and financially supported beyond Belgium, with contributions from the European Union. While public funding and family foundations are a cornerstone of financial stability, Kseniya acknowledges the importance of engaging with individuals. “We’ve launched the Schola ULB Fund, inviting private contributions,” she explains. “Diversifying our funding sources is a priority to navigate the uncertainties that come with annual funding decisions.”

As Schola ULB continues its journey, it remains rooted in the community and reacts to challenges with resilience and innovation. Its commitment to the development of students and tutors alike is a testament to the transformative power of education and mentorship.

For more information about Schola ULB, tutor recruitment and how to support its work, see schola-ulb.be.

Schola ULB at a glance

  • 130 partner institutions
  • 46,200 students supported in 35 years
  • 3,000 students/year in the last 2 years
  • 5,700 tutors since its creation
  • 500 active tutors per semester on average
  • Over 20,000 tutoring hours/year


Visit our website to find all the associations supported by the Immobel Engagement Fund.