Prince's Trust Ambassador Tom Hardy catches up with one of our first Celebrate Success winners, Kenny Ross. In this revealing film, the pair discuss addiction, alcohol and never giving up on your dreams. You can read Kenny’s full story below.

Kenny had a difficult childhood and spent time in foster care. Family problems and money worries were a constant factor and Kenny left home at 16.

He spent the next nine years in and out of hostels and supported housing and felt increasingly isolated. Unemployed, he started drinking and taking drugs to get through the day, occasionally getting in trouble with the police. His future looked bleak.

Kenny says:

I didn’t really have anything to live for. I spent any money I had on cheap cider and all kinds of drugs. I even started dabbling in heroin – I never injected it but it was probably only a matter of time. Things were getting pretty serious, but something inside of me told me I had to change.

Kenny heard about The Prince’s Trust just in time and found himself on a five-day residential course run by the charity in Leeds. “Getting away from it all made such a difference, and I came back determined to change,” he says. Kenny later joined The Prince’s Trust Team programme, a 12-week personal development course that helps unemployed young people into work.
By the time the course finished, Kenny was a different person. He was brimming with confidence, and no longer felt the need to drink heavily or take drugs. Having discovered an interest in youth work, he applied to become an assistant Team leader on the next course.
Kenny remembers getting the call to say he’d got the job. “It was like I’d got a record contract,” he says.

I just couldn't believe I'd got a job - and not just any old job, this was a career.

Kenny worked for The Prince’s Trust for four years, helping hundreds of young people to get their lives back on track. He has since continued his work with vulnerable people and is currently an outreach worker, helping to tackle rough sleeping.

He still volunteers as a mentor for The Prince’s Trust, acting as a role model to young people from disadvantaged backgrounds and helping them to find work.

If it wasn’t for The Prince’s Trust, I might have been dead or in prison by now,” admits Kenny. 

The Trust came into my life at just the right time and made me who I am today. Now my life is about helping others in the same way The Trust helped me.