VIY

Volunteer Mentors

To date, more than 500 professional tradespeople have volunteered their time and shared their skills as mentors for young people on local VIY projects. Their involvement is critical to the impact and success of VIY, with each mentor typically committing more than 20 hours to the project over the course of 6-8 weeks.

We also work with VIY Lead Mentors. Lead Mentors are tradespeople who have showed such commitment to VIY that they have received training to become VIY Assessors, assessing the work and development of young people and providing the City & Guilds qualifications.

Profiles of some of our key mentors are below.

If you are a professional tradesperson and keen to help young people, share your skills and improve your local community then get in touch by e-mailing info@teamviy.com.

Paul Gunter

Paul Gunter

Name: Paul Gunter

Region: London

Location: North London

Working with: Hackney Marsh Adventure Playground, Hackney

Skills/experience: Carpentry and Joinery

Reason for taking part: Paul got involved to give something back to his local community.

Anthony Engi-Meacock

Anthony Engi-Meacock

Name: Anthony Engi-Meacock

Region: London

Location: East London

Working with: Victoria Park, Hackney

Skills/experience: Architecture, Designer and Builder of small structures, furniture designer and joiner

Reason for taking part: "I enjoyed seeing how the young people grew to like the carpentry. At first they didn't think they could do it, but then they started enjoying it and seeing the results of their work. It was a great experience".

Brian Whitacker

Brian Whitacker

Name: Brian Whitacker

Region: London

Location: North London

Working with: Hackney Marsh Adventure Playground, Hackney

Skills/experience: Carpenter

Reason for taking part: "I volunteered to give back to the community and pass on my skills".

Steve Keeley

Steve Keeley

Name: Steve Keeley

Region: Wales

Location: Swansea

Working with: Talking Hands, Swansea

Skills/experience: Multi-trade

Reason for taking part: "Why did I get into it?...more or less the same reason as a lot of your other mentors, to give something back and to help other people, especially young people who often struggle to get an opportunity to get onto the employment ladder. I strongly believe in training and qualifications and projects like this are the ideal opportunity to achieve what could be the first worthwhile certificate they have earned and a stepping stone to earning many more. If anyone is thinking of becoming a mentor then just go for it..it really isn’t a bad thing to put yourself out once in a while and help other people who need it".

Dan Hurley

Dan Hurley

Name: Dan Hurley

Region: Wales

Location: Newport

Working with: Charter Housing, Newport

Skills/experience: Multi-trade

Reason for taking part: "Having just set up my own company, the project was the perfect place to meet the next generation of young people, looking to learn and discover new skills. Having been one of those youngsters looking for similar opportunities before, myself, it was a way of helping them and offering them the same opportunities that were given to me".

Kamal Uddin

Kamal Uddin

Name: Kamal Uddin

Region: West Midlands

Location: Birmingham

Working with: Bosnia & Herzegovina UK Network, Birmingham

Skills/experience: Multi-trade

Reason for taking part: Kamal has volunteered at Bliss4All, Stonehouse Gang and Bosnia House. He volunteers to pass on his skills to the younger generation.

Martin O’Neil

Martin O’Neil

Name: Martin O’Neil

Region: West Midlands

Location: Birmingham

Working with: Hall Green Boxing Club, Birmingham

Skills/experience: Project Engineer

Reason for taking part: "I volunteer to give back to the community".

Hermes Pantelis

Hermes Pantelis

Name: Hermes Pantelis

Region: West Midlands

Location: Birmingham

Working with: Hall Green Boxing Club, Birmingham

Skills/experience: Plumber

Reason for taking part: Hermes volunteers to pass on his skills and give back to the community.

John McKoy

John McKoy

Name: John McKoy

Region: London

Location: North London

Working with: Shakespeare Walk Adventure Playground (SWAPA), London

Skills/experience: Multi-trade

Reason for taking part: John volunteered at SWAPA after hearing about the project from a fellow mentor, Danny Thompson. He then went on to volunteer at the Lion Club and Victoria Park as well.

Barry Peppin

Barry Peppin

Name: Barry Peppin

Region: West Midlands

Location: Birmingham

Working with: Bliss4All, Birmingham

Skills/experience: Multi-trade

Reason for taking part: "I volunteer to give back to the community".

Reuben Bradshaw

Reuben Bradshaw

Name: Reuben Bradshaw

Region: West Midlands

Location: Birmingham

Working with: All Saints Youth Project, Birmingham

Skills/experience: Carpentry and Joinery

Reason for taking part: "I volunteer to give something back to the community and pass on my skills".

Paul Cazley

Paul Cazley

Name: Paul Cazley

Region: London

Location: North London

Working with: Islington Arts Factory, Islington

Skills/experience: Painting, decorating and plumbing

Reason for taking part: Paul thought he should get involved to give back some of his experience.

Raheel Iqbal

Raheel Iqbal

Name: Raheel Iqbal

Region: West Midlands

Location: Birmingham

Working with: The Stonehouse Gang, Birmingham

Skills/experience: Multi-trade

Reason for taking part: Raheel volunteered to give back some of his skills to the community.

Stephen Richards

Stephen Richards

Name: Stephen Richards

Region: West Midlands

Location: Birmingham

Working with: The Stonehouse Gang, Birmingham

Skills/experience: Multi-trade

Reason for taking part: "I got involved to offer support to VIY and the youths involved".

Mohammed Imran Younas

Mohammed Imran Younas

Name: Mohammed Imran Younas

Region: West Midlands

Location: Birmingham

Working with: Bliss4All, Birmingham

Skills/experience: Multi-trade

Reason for taking part: Imran is a dedicated mentor and has, so far, volunteered at Bliss4All, Stonehouse Gang, Hall Green Boxing Club and Bosnia House youth clubs. He does so to give back to the community.

Steven Alex Nadeem

Steven Alex Nadeem

Name: Steven Alex Nadeem

Region: West Midlands

Location: Birmingham

Working with: Bliss4All, Birmingham

Skills/experience: Multi-trade

Reason for taking part: Alex has volunteered many hours on VIY so far and has supported at Bliss4All, Stonehouse Gang, All Saints and Bosnia House youth clubs. He does so to support the project and the youths involved.

Oscar Ros Liburd

Oscar Ros Liburd

Name: Oscar Ros Liburd

Region: West Midlands

Location: Birmingham

Working with: Bliss4All, Birmingham

Skills/experience: Part-time lecturer

Reason for taking part: Oscar thinks the VIY project is really exciting and volunteered because he wanted to be a part of it.

Karl Langston

Karl Langston

Name: Karl Langston

Region: London

Location: West London

Working with: Sulgrave Youth Club, Hammersmith

Skills/experience: Master craftsman and specialist builder

Reason for taking part: Karl has trained hundreds of apprentices and considers VIY "a very worthwhile project".

Babak Tajik

Babak Tajik

Name: Babak Tajik

Region: London

Location: West London

Working with: Sulgrave Youth Club, Hammersmith

Skills/experience: Painter and decorator

Reason for taking part: Bobby volunteered at Sulgrave and Woodrow youth centers. "I would like to help young people and give something back to the community".

Burdette Fergus

Burdette Fergus

Name: Burdette Fergus

Region: London

Location: South London

Working with: Stewarts Road Adventure Playground, Lambeth

Skills/experience: Plasterer

Reason for taking part: Burdette volunteered at Stewarts Road Adventure Playground, SWAPA and Knights youth clubs. Growing up in the youth club environment helped Burdette to communicate and understand those around him so he would like to give back some of that knowledge.

Martyn Hancock

Martyn Hancock

Name: Martyn Hancock

Region: West Midlands

Location: Birmingham

Working with: Bosnia & Herzegovina UK Network, Birmingham

Skills/experience: 35 years experience in general building

Reason for taking part: Martyn was encouraged to take part in VIY by the local Wickes store

Sam Green

Sam Green

Name: Sam Green

Region: West Midlands

Location: Birmingham

Working with: Bosnia & Herzegovina UK Network, Birmingham

Skills/experience: Multi-trade

Reason for taking part: Sam volunteered because he is keen to help the community to get trade skills.

John Wadhams

John Wadhams

Name: John Wadhams

Region: West Midlands

Location: Birmingham

Working with: Bosnia & Herzegovina UK Network, Birmingham

Skills/experience: Plumber and carpenter

Reason for taking part: John got involved with VIY to give back to the community.

Chris Woolley

Chris Woolley

Name: Chris Woolley

Region: West Midlands

Location: Birmingham

Working with: Bosnia & Herzegovina UK Network, Birmingham

Skills/experience: Multi-trade

Reason for taking part: Chris volunteered because he wanted to give back to other people in the community .

Andrew Golding

Andrew Golding

Name: Andrew Golding

Region: London

Location: South London

Working with: Stewarts Road Adventure Playground, Lambeth

Skills/experience: More than 30 years experience as a self-employed carpenter/ joiner

Reason for taking part: Andrew heard about VIY through another Wickes tradesman and has got plenty of time on his hands to help.

Noor Muhammed

Noor Muhammed

Name: Noor Muhammed

Region: London

Location: East London

Working with: Newark Youth Club, Newark

Skills/experience: More than 10 years experience in domestic refurbishments

Reason for taking part: Mo volunteers at Newark, Adelina and SWAPA youth clubs. Mo wants to give his time to helping the younger generation learn about the building trade.

Brian Carver

Brian Carver

Name: Brian Carver

Region: London

Location: East London

Working with: Newark Youth Club, Newark

Skills/experience: 30 years experience in the trade and an NVQ in plastering

Reason for taking part: Del volunteered at both Newark and Adelina Grove youth clubs. Del would like to use his skills to help the community.

Jason Mills

Jason Mills

Name: Jason Mills

Region: London

Location: East London

Working with: Newark Youth Club, Newark

Skills/experience: Over 10 years experience in carpentry, tiling and wall-papering

Reason for taking part: Jason volunteered to give back to the community and to give young people a chance to learn trade skills

Danny Thompson

Danny Thompson

Name: Danny Thompson

Region: London

Location: South London

Working with: Stewarts Road Adventure Playground, Lambeth

Skills/experience: Multi-trade

Reason for taking part: Danny is our VIY Volunteer Champion as he has now volunteered at three clubs including Knights Youth Centre, Stewarts Road Adventure Playground and Shakespeare Walk Adventure Playground. Danny takes part because he thinks “VIY and Build-it are really brilliant ideas to put something back into the community and great ways to help young people – they are well worth the effort.”

Yordan Krastev

Yordan Krastev

Name: Yordan Krastev

Region: London

Location: South London

Working with: Stewarts Road Adventure Playground, Lambeth

Skills/experience: Experience of painting, tiling and dry-walling.

Reason for taking part: Yordan volunteered to help kids within the local community develop trade skills

Krasimir Tonchev

Krasimir Tonchev

Name: Krasimir Tonchev

Region: London

Location: South London

Working with: Stewarts Road Adventure Playground, Lambeth

Skills/experience: Multi-trade

Reason for taking part: Krasimir volunteered for VIY to help young people in the local community

Paul Minderides

Paul Minderides

Name: Paul Minderides

Region: London

Location: North London

Working with: Pedro Youth Club,                Hackney

Skills/experience: 18 years experience as a carpenter with skills covering most aspects of building and maintenance

Reason for taking part: Paul volunteered to encourage the next generation of potential tradesmen and to raise the profile of the building trade

Tim Ball

Tim Ball

Name: Tim Ball

Region: London

Location: North London

Working with: Pedro Youth Club,                Hackney

Skills/experience: Qualified electrician, gas engineer and plasterer (and First Aid instructor). Has been fitting kitchens for ten years

Reason for taking part: Tim volunteered at Pedro, Stewarts Road Adventure Playground and Islington Arts Factory youth clubs. He volunteered for VIY because he feels it's a very simple way of showing young people what they can achieve.

Chris Thomas

Chris Thomas

Name: Chris Thomas

Region: London

Location: North London

Working with: Pedro Youth Club,                Hackney

Skills/experience: 35 years experience in carpentry and joinery, plumbing, electrics, installing bathrooms and kitchens

Reason for taking part: Chris volunteered to help young people get in to a trade - and maybe find an apprentice!

Mehdi Kalimany

Mehdi Kalimany

Name: Mehdi Kalimany

Region: London

Location: North London

Working with: Pedro Youth Club,                Hackney

Skills/experience: Painting and decorating for ten years, as well as fitting kitchens and bathrooms

Reason for taking part: Mehdi volunteered because he gets a buzz out of working with young people to broaden their horizons and give them opportunities

Lobsang Golha

Lobsang Golha

Name: Lobsang Golha

Region: London

Location: North London

Working with: Pedro Youth Club,                Hackney

Skills/experience: A carpenter and joiner by trade, with 15 years experience in plumbing, general building and painting

Reason for taking part: Lobsang is very keen to help create opportunities for young people in Hackney.

Sam Hadfield

Sam Hadfield

Name: Sam Hadfield

Region: London

Location: North London

Working with: Pedro Youth Club,                Hackney

Skills/experience: Has been a site manager, bricklayer, carpenter and joiner - as well as a youth worker and boxing coach

Reason for taking part: Sam is a youth worker at the Pedro Youth Club. He says "it is really important for the local area, so it's crucial that we keep it open and well maintained!"

Rob Elliot

Rob Elliot

Name: Rob Elliot

Region: London

Location: North London

Working with: Pedro Youth Club,                Hackney

Skills/experience: Painting (including exterior murals), landscaping and gardening - as well as being a qualified youth worker

Reason for taking part: Rob volunteered because he feels "VIY is a great thing for Pedro Youth Club and its members - it will leave a lasting legacy for the club and help young people find work".

Awards

Big Society Awards
Hollis UK Sponsorship Awards
Corporate Engagement Awards

Partners

cosponsorshipagency.com www.wickes.co.uk www.cityandguilds.com Nesta Cabinet Office