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Citywall is increasingly gaining a strong reputations for engaging young people and families who have been deemed hard to reach by other services, and for effective multi-agency working. Here's what some of our clients and partners have to say about the impact of Citywall so far.

"The biggest impact of the mentoring has been on my mood.  When I look back on the things I said in January I feel like I've made good progress.  I used to feel really low and I hurt myself.  I feel much better about things now because I feel like I'm coping in a better way.  Me and my mum aren't having the same huge arguments anymore because things have changed in the choices I am making.  I used to take loads of risks and run away.  I'm not at the moment.  It's also really taken the pressure off catching up on my coursework so I feel less stressed.  When I was behind on things I was really down on myself and I felt like I didn't care because I couldn't see how to fix it.  My first exam is next week.  My coursework is done and I've been revising and going to after school revision sessions.  I'm hoping to get some reasonable grades in the summer.  I know exactly what I need to get into college and I've already bagged some grades through my coursework and module exams."

Young Person

"Mentoring from Citywall gives me something to do during the day that's fun and educational.  You can talk to the mentors, and they listen.  If I've got any problems, I can speak to the mentors rather than the staff who I see every day.  It has helped me settle down, because I've moved around to different care homes, and lots of the staff have changed or left, and it's just nice to see the same people regularly."

Young Person

“David was always approachable, sensitive, creative and understanding in his approach to young people and to all the people who worked with, cared for and supported them. Young people trusted him and found him easy to talk to. This helped to bring progress and success in areas where there were difficulties or issues to overcome.”


"Citywall has been a valuable element of an alternative programme of education for an extremely vulnerable young person. They have been extremely flexible where changes have occurred which have effected provision.  Communication between the team and myself and operational workers within the residential home have been strong and all team members were skilled in engaging with an extremely disengaged young person." 

Lynsey Burridge

Trafford Virtual School Head

“Dave Atkinson is a caring, knowledgeable and emotionally intelligent professional.  Dave is honest, trustworthy and loyal.  He builds excellent working relationships with colleagues and young people quickly and effectively.  Dave's high level knowledge ofmulti agency working, safeguarding procedures coupled with his personality mean that he is in exactly the right field of work to make a difference to children, young people and and organisation he is working with or for.”

Lisa Fathers

Associate Headteacher at Flixton Girls School and Alliance for Learning Lead

 "Working closely with Dave for six years, I observed the encouraging and supportive but professional and firm relationships he forms with young people to move them further along their journey. He works extremely well with other professionals, commanding their respect for what he achieves with young people and has a thorough knowledge of Safeguarding issues along with how schools and a large number of other agencies operate". 

Mr M Gartland

Previously Vice Principal of Knutsford Academy and now Director of Tutor Educational Services

 “David provides great insight and empathy into the needs of the individual young person. David is an excellent communicator who strives for the most positive outcomes for young people and has developed good relationships with agencies and parents/carers so that these outcomes can be achieved through multi agency partnership working. David is a strong and able partner in ensuring that young people can achieve highly and their social and emotional needs are met.”

Jonathan King

Specialist Education Practitioner, Trafford Council

 “David is a team player who builds consensus and displays an ability to always get people working alongside him within a project. David always works with the utmost integrity placing the student at the centre of any work undertaken. His focus on emotional well-being builds stability and academic success for students and their families. I recommend David to you without reservation.”

Chris Leigh

Director, Knutsford Academy

“Dave Atkinson has long term and wide ranging experience at securing effective relationships with some of our most vulnerable young people.  He creates supportive relationships that encourage, motivate and challenge students to take significant steps forward in their lives.  He works effectively in engaging with both students and their families as well as associated professionals and is caring and professional in equal balance.”

Miss. K. Barratt

Ellesmere Park High School

“David is a strong leader who communicates vision and expectations well to those around him.  He is a critical thinker capable of building attainable and engaging short and long term action plans to build a successful project.  David has a natural way with people and engages effectively with team members, external agencies and clients.  David is always calm and communicates a confidence that is reassuring for distressed clients and enables them to work together towards solutions.”

Graham Anns

Director, Freedom Central

“Dave was a key part of the leadership team that founded Salford Central Foodbank. He is a very clear and inspiring communicator who is able to engage with a wide range of audiences,. His vision and organisation skills meant that he was able to establish and coordinate a far reaching multi-agency network for the foodbank which has enabled us to identify and serve those in need. Dave is excellent at connecting with people; empathising, and motivating individuals who are from vulnerable and troubled backgrounds. Dave is an extremely organised and personable individual who adds value to any team he works with.”

Phil Whitman

Project Manager at Salford Central Foodbank