Introducing Fresh Futures

30 May, 2022

Investing in a better future

Freshwalks has launched Fresh Futures, an outdoors-based, careers and mentoring service – designed to help young people (aged 14-17) access the countryside, access industry, and shape their future success as part of the #OurYear2022 campaign.

Our pilot April event in Edale was delivered in partnership with Manchester City Council and the social justice charity, Nacro. The format and setting of Freshwalks events act as a natural icebreaker for many and the fluid human dynamic allows those involved to relax and for conversations to flow more naturally.

Helping young people achieve their full potential

Greater Manchester’s young people are bursting with talent but need help to achieve their full potential. The last couple of years have been particularly challenging for young people and unfairly so, as the pandemic paused life as we know it. It’s now time to build back stronger, make up for any lost time and create new opportunities.

For the pilot event, we removed the barriers for young people, organising free transport, the loan of equipment where necessary and providing suitable food and drinks across the day.

It was a day to relax, enjoy the scenery and spark flames of ambition, opening eyes to career possibilities that hadn’t been considered before. Even better, to enjoy the mental and physical benefits of the outdoors with a side of ice-cream and cake to indulge in.

Photograph: Tom Jennings

Our mentors

The first Fresh Futures event was lucky enough to have the following inspiring individuals mentoring the future generation:

  • Michael Taylor: Journalist, radio DJ and political advisor. A founder member of Freshwalks volunteering to support students at Aquinas College with a passion for helping people enjoy our hills and mountains.
  • Beth Nunn: The founder of an educational social enterprise PIE: Pursuing Individual Excellence ( which has supported over 3000 young people across the North West In education and community settings.
  • Naomi Timperley: Co-founder of Tech North Advocates and GSI. An experienced growth and innovation consultant working with start-ups and growth businesses. Proud to be in the top 50 Computer Weekly Most Influential Woman in UK IT 2018, 2019, 2020 and 2021!
  • Adam Mitcheson: CEO & Co-Founder of my2be, a mentoring platform powering DEI, talent development and retention. Works with a range of clients globally including Silicon Valley giants such as Box and Nextdoor helping them develop and scale Mentoring and Development programs.
  • Kai Ojo: Tech leader with a passion for Diversity and Inclusion. Kai has been managing and leading teams for over 20 years and has successfully delivered multiple programmes to global customers in the tech industry.
  • Ruby Melling: An award-winning Talent Acquisition and Strategy Consultant who works with fast-growth businesses in the UK and Europe helping them to recruit, retain, and engage the best diverse talent in an inclusive way.

It’s fair to say the pilot event was a huge success and well received by both the young people and our volunteer mentors.

Michael Taylor commented “As potential mentors we just brought our open hearts, a curiosity, and our passion for the outdoors. The young people brought ideas and energy, but also bonded with each other.”

And over on LinkedIn, Kai Ojo reflected “So inspirational! Laughed a lot! Had a few tears in my eyes along the way when listening to their perspectives on some of the challenges we face around #diversityandinclusion”.

How to get involved in Fresh Futures?

Though we’ll have qualified walk leaders to look after route navigation and group management, we’re looking to resource a small cohort of 4-6 business leaders to walk with us on each future event, providing careers advice, mentoring and insights into the world of work.

You don’t need to have built a business empire to participate but might have an interesting story to share.

More than anything, we’re looking for people from diverse backgrounds and sectors who passionately want to help. It will be a very rewarding day for everyone involved.

If you’re interested or perhaps know anyone? Please email Michael Di Paola –

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