A local businessman has been “empowering” young people through a training business he set up from scratch.

Neil Degg from Salford founded The Training Hub, which is based in Manchester City Centre, in 2014.

The company provides free training courses to young people across Salford and Manchester on subjects such as gangs, knife crime, self-harm, trafficking and radicalisation.

Neil says that growing up in a deprived area of Manchester inspired him to set up his business.

“I grew up in an area called Harpurhey, which I think it’s been classed as one of the most deprived areas in Manchester and still is” he said.

“We grew up thinking our only hope was maybe to turn to crime and not really make anything of ourselves.”

“When I got to about age 34, it dawned on me what was missing from my childhood, which was empowerment, people around me who had the skills to help me in certain areas where I was struggling.”

The company’s main focus is to help young people make better life choices.

“So, what our driving force is, is to empower not just the people looking after the young people with the skills to empower young people, but to directly say to young people- you might have started here but with the skills, help and support, actually, you can go in the same direction as maybe someone born in a more affluent area.”

The Training Hub now works with local authorities and private organisations, including Action for Children and The Keys Group to educate young people.

The company’s office in Manchester City Centre

“Their [The Keys Group’s] young people, like any young person across the country, are tackling everyday issues like knife crime, being bullied, gangs, you know, a lot of the subjects we see in the news today.

“We like to think that we’re leading the way in terms of providing a solution because there isn’t a lot out there and if there is, how do we find it?”

 Neil’s company now has over 600 online training courses, with 3,000 trainers providing information and training on these topics to young or vulnerable people, and those that care for them.

Since it began, The Training Hub has offered 48 different types of specialist training that has been accessed by more than 72,000 individuals who work with vulnerable people.

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