Young black entrepeneur reaches national final

Young black entrepeneur reaches national final

AN ENTERPRISING young black entrepeneur from North London is in the running for a national prize.

Nathaniel Peat is among the finalists of the Enterprising Young Brits competition, which recognises people who have turned their dreams into reality.

And he is now looking for people to vote for him to help him gain even further recognition for his project to tackle anti-social behaviour.

The 28-year-old, who is a training pilot and has a masters degree in aeronautical engineering, launched The Safety Box last year in a pro-active bid to tackle anti-social behaviour, and the fact that youngsters carry knives and other weapons to protect themselves.

The Safety Box is a programme targeting young people in school, raising their levels of attainment and respect by teaching them conflict resolution, verbal diffusion, aggression management, assertion tactics, safety awareness and personal confidence.

Nathaniel came up with the idea by drawing on his life growing up in Tottenham, and the fact that a lot of his acquintances from that period have seen their lives go down the drain.

He said: “A lot of the acquaintances – I wouldn’t call them friends any more – from when I was growing up have ended up dead, in prison or on drugs, so I have a real understanding of what life is like on the streets.

“So what I am trying to do now is to reach out to youngsters, and get them to believe in themselves and raise their levels of self-esteem.

“There are a lot of clever people hanging out on the streets, and if we can reach out to them and redeem them enough, who knows what could be achieved in a couple of years?”

Nathaniel was motivated to get the project up and running after a close friend of his family, Mark Prince, lost his son Kiyan when he was stabbed in broad daylight trying to break up a fight after school.

He researched the national curriculum guidelines so that he could tailor The Safety Box to individual schools, and 18 months down the line, Nathaniel has achieved his goal.

Programmes can now be adapted for each individual school and age group, and can fit directly in with the PSHE or citizenship curriculum.

As well as addressing the roots of the problem, the scheme also teaches young people how to defend themselves effectively against knives, so they do not feel the need to carry a weapon themselves.

Nathaniel, who is currently training to become a pilot, believes that negativity is the only thing which will stop The Safety Box from working.

He added: “My main focus is to inspire the youths and children into understanding that they can achieve anything if they put their mind to it, they are limitless.

“All it takes is a little hard work, dedication, focus and people that believe in you. The only limitation that exists is ourselves.”

Nathaniel is in the running for an award in the social category of the competition, with the final taking place next Tuesday evening Chancellor Alistair Darling will announce the winners, presenting each of them with a trophy and cheque.

Vote for Nathaniel here:

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