About us

Thanks for stopping by to find out more about The Kent Foundation. We are a rare one of a kind charity based in Kent dedicated to providing free business support and advice to Kent’s young people who wish to start or grow a business in Kent. There’s a little bit more about what we get up to below but if there’s anything else you want to know about our charity then we welcome you to get in touch.

The Kent Foundation - Business Support for Kent's Young PeopleOur Mission

“Ensuring young people of Kent get the support they need to be successful in starting and growing a business, so contributing to the overall success of Kent”

Our Truths

Truth 1
We build confidence and enable young people to realise their personal and business potential
Truth 2
We help young people to believe in themselves and their business ideas
Truth 3
We promote business as a realistic career option for young people
Truth 4
We listen, engage and respond appropriately to issues faced by young business owners to support informed decision making
Truth 5
We offer support to the ‘disadvantaged’ and the ‘advantaged’ in the same way
Truth 6
Our services are free

Trustees of The Kent Foundation:

Patrons: 
Viscountess de L’Isle
Allan Mowatt, OBE, Kent Ambassador

  • Julian Kirkness Chairman of business support charity The Kent FoundationJulian Kirkness  Chairman of The Kent Foundation – Volunteer Business Mentor – Kent Ambassador – Software Specialist
  • Richard Waller – Vice Chairman of The Kent Foundation – Volunteer Business Mentor – Finance/Accounting specialist
  • David Hughes – Kent County Council Economic Development
  • Michaela Partridge – Volunteer Business Mentor – HR expert and small business owner
  • Liz Jenkins – Volunteer Business Mentor – Education/Career Specialist and small business owner
  • Tom Gates – Chairman of Kent County Council
  • Dave Garraway – Honorary Treasurer
  • Honorary Secretary

Where did it all start?

The Kent Foundation was launched in 1985 during a time when the economic climate was similar to today’s. The Rt Hon Lord Aldington who was the appointed board chairman invited Kent’s young entrepreneurs and the press to a reception in the grounds of Leeds Castle.

A need had been identified for business support for aspiring young entrepreneurs across Kent. The Kent Foundation was (and still is) a place for Kent’s young people to express their business ideas and get the support to turn them into a reality and boost the economy of Kent

Business Support Services

Research plays a key part in the development of our business support services. We have commissioned numerous pieces of work to find out the most effective, efficient and useful services for Kent’s young business people. This means we can offer a range of services to engage, inspire, develop and support young people to start up and grow a business.

These include: