The Prince’s Trust, the UK’s leading youth charity, has today launched a campaign encouraging young people across the UK to take their first step to becoming the next generation of entrepreneurs and business leaders.

Featured in the campaign is Burnley’s Scott Heffernan, now 32, who was supported through the Prince’s Trust Enterprise programme,which works with 18-30 year olds to turn big ideas into business reality, to launch his tattoo parlour, Timeless Tattoos, in Burnley.

Supported by NatWest, the #YouAreTheNext campaign features Scott alongside four other successful Prince’s Trust supported businesses in a film, spreading the message that young people already have the ideas needed to carve out their own success.

The film credits support as all-important in enabling young entrepreneurs to thrive and shows the crucial role of family, friends and charities such as The Prince’s Trust, in helping young people to succeed.

Watch and share the #YouAreTheNext campaign film here.

The campaign is backed by NatWest who, as the largest corporate supporter of the Enterprise programme, have been instrumental in supporting some of the UK’s best and brightest entrepreneurs to move from an idea to a viable, flourishing business.

Scott became mute after leaving secondary school.

“My mental health was so bad, I was literally mute. I couldn’t talk to anyone and refused to leave the house.”

Funding cuts stopped the professional support Scott had been receiving, so he contacted a specialist charity to pick up where the support had left off and help him reach a point where he could move on with his life.

“They said I should consider the Prince’s Trust Enterprise programme for support starting my own tattoo business. People were always complimentary about my drawings and I’d done a bit of tattooing at a friend’s salon before, but setting up my own business was a whole new ball game. And that’s where The Prince’s Trust were so good.”

“They gave me all the basics to get started, kept in touch after the programme and gave me a long-term business mentor for extra support.

“There were teething problems, but I stuck at it and I’ve now been running my own business, Timeless Tattoos, for almost three years.

“Having The Prince’s Trust believe that I could make it as a tattoo artist was a turning point for me. I’ve now got a healthy business and client base, I’m expanding into permanent make-up tattoos, and I’ve even started mentoring a young tattooist on behalf of The Trust.

“I still suffer with mental health issues but the difference is that I can manage them now, and I feel infinitely better about my future and providing for my family.”

Clare Crabb, North Regional Director at The Prince’s Trust, said:“The vision and commitment of businesses like NatWest, who are prepared to give financial support to help young entrepreneurs, means we are able to support more and more young people into business. No young person should ever feel like there isn’t a place for them to work on their ideas and be supported into launching their own business. Partners like NatWest allow us to continue to unlock the potential of the next young entrepreneurs in Lancashire.”

Since 1983, The Prince’s Trust has helped more than 85,000 young people into business. Its Enterprise programme supports potential entrepreneurs with training and mentoring to help them learn business basics, write a business plan and test their idea, and even offers them access to funding.

The Prince’s Trust recently introduced Prince’s Trust Online, which offers an online version of the programme to support young entrepreneurs; so whether it’s face-to-face or online, the support is there however young people need it, to turn their ideas into reality and become their next boss.

Gordon Merrylees, Managing Director of Entrepreneurship at NatWest, said: “For the last 18 years we have worked in partnership with The Prince’s Trust to create an environment that encourages and enables young people to develop their talents and ideas into sustainable businesses. Time and time again we see the transformative impact of someone believing in your idea and providing the necessary support systems to validate it, test it and develop it into a reality, and into a career.

Self-employment is an empowering opportunity for young people as whatever their background, they can carve out a new life for themselves by doing something they love and are great at, the world needs it and it can make a difference to people’s lives.”

To discover how The Prince’s Trust helps thousands of young people a year into business, and learn more about The Trust-supported businesses already out there, visit princes-trust.org.uk/enterprise

Watch and share the #YouAreTheNext campaign film here (ready for launch).