Danny Barnes is the founder of ‘Acknowledging Youths CIC’ – an organisation that supports young people to improve their lives by providing education, training and employment opportunities.

Location: London

Danny had a troubled start to his life and spent time in prison, experienced gang life and was homeless. Inspired by his daughter to make a change, he decided to turn his life around and give back to the local area by supporting young people to make positive life choices.

In 2012, Danny started Acknowledging Youths CIC by working in the local community to find out more about what support local young people needed. The organisation now offers young people one to one support to help them identify where they could get work, help with CV writing and training in interview techniques as well as delivering first aid courses to schools, and young people gangs involved in knife crime, facilitating local young people to help save lives in their community.

Danny recognises that some young people have the potential to start their own businesses. To help them get started, he set up an Enterprise Club in partnership with NatWest. This offers young people the opportunity do a business course to make sure they’re on the right track and have the best chance to make it on their own.

The organisation works with juvenile ex-offenders, drug dealers, gang member’s young people in care, and pupil referral units for young people who are not able to attend mainstream education, often due to exclusion. To date, AY CIC has worked with 4,000 young people across London and they plan on opening a community hub to promote positive community cohesion and wellbeing.

Amy Fernandes, Bid writer and Board Member at Acknowledging Youths CIC Said:

A leader is one who motivates and inspires one to reach their fullest potential even when they’ve stopped believing in themselves. Danny at Acknowledging Youths is an example of a great leader as he single handedly started off his business with an aim to help disadvantaged youths and has succeeded in doing so.