Pete Lorenzelli

27 July 2023

Dale Bray

27 July 2023

David Goode

28 February 2023

I work for VIY to give someone a chance at the possibility of a future through learning a trade and I love the opportunities to help those who need a bit of encouragement.

My personal highlight so far with VIY is seeing the success on a young person’s face when they’ve achieved a task!

Simon Kitson

3 August 2022

When you start a project and young people come to site not knowing much about trade skills, but achieve so much and get their accreditation at the end. That’s why we do this job. We’re helping them make a positive change in their lives. All young people deserve a chance, a helping hand.

We’re also helping communities. It makes me feel proud when we get great feedback from the place we’re renovating and when we get the young people asking to join us on another site.

Kate Kerr

22 July 2022

“I wasn’t very academic at school and I know that having a positive opportunity to learn outside of the classroom was a release for me from the everyday pressures of schooling and I hope it’s the same for younger people today – and combining this with the transformation of buildings that are really important for local communities makes VIY one of the best initiatives I’ve ever encountered.”

Mark Teulon

12 April 2022

It’s been great shadowing the other mentors, and learning where the VIY strong standards on Health & Safety. Sarah, another VIY Mentor who I’ve worked with a lot, is also a class act with the learners, she has a good way with them.

Dan Munn

17 June 2018

Dan is a former prison officer and first volunteered with VIY in 2017. He has a particular passion for carpentry, whilst also having other trade skills. Dan enjoys his role because: “No two projects are the same. Each one poses its own challenges, which we always overcome. I also meet young volunteers who have been through the justice system and it’s brilliant to see the impact that VIY has on their confidence and prospects.”

Jasper Taylor

24 May 2022

The best thing about working with VIY is that the role combines an interesting amount of trade skills and experience along with communication between learners, other mentors and the project teams. It is a welcome change from the standard site work.

A recurring highlight for me is enabling people to try something different while also just spending time together and (hopefully) helping people broaden their horizons. It also feels great to be welcomed in to a team where I have a clear role to play and other people to work alongside in pursuit of a noble cause.

Alan Dalton

17 January 2010

Alan joined the VIY team early in 2017, first as a volunteer in his local area, then became Lead Mentor, and is now one of our longest-serving mentors. A talented carpenter and multi-skilled tradesman from East London, he has a passion for helping young people who are facing challenging circumstances, having passed through the care system himself as a young person.

Imran Younas

17 January 2010

Imran, from Birmingham, is VIY’s most experienced Lead Mentor, having mentored on more than 50 projects. He has a wealth of trade experience and used to run his own plumbing and maintenance company. He has also been recognised several times for his work with young people through VIY, most recently receiving the Aston Villa Community Foundation ‘Most Valuable Community Player’ award in 2017.