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Occupation: Awards Manager

Age: 33

E-Mail address: ciarabrennan@unltd.org.uk

Place of Birth: Belfast

Where you live: Glengormley

First Job: Fitting children’s shoes in Clarks while at school

What it taught me: That I had a natural flair for sales leading me to pursue a degree in Communications. This was quite helpful at the age of 16 when I really hadn’t a clue what I wanted to do in life

Family/Status: Married

Name of spouse and children: Husband Paul Hills, we’ve been together for 10 years and son Ethan, aged 16 months

Best advice anyone ever gave you: You can achieve anything you want, if you want it that bad you will get it. Great advice from my amazing mother

Best advice you could give someone starting out: The same thing my mother said to me when I was very young and add to it my favourite quote’ “If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always got.” Think of the baby step changes you could make to achieve your goals

Ciara Brennan has led the Northern Ireland team of UnLtd – the foundation for social entrepreneurs for the last eight years. Her role involves finding and supporting individuals across Northern Ireland who have the ideas, drive and commitment to create social impact projects and businesses.

Having supported hundreds of individuals to turn a raw idea into a reality, Ciara has entered into some of the most deprived communities, forming partnerships and relationships with people at all levels to create a lasting impact.

She loves her job describing it as the best job in the world and feeling like ‘the secret millionaire’, She says, “What a great feeling it is to be able to provide the cash and support to people who want to change society for the better”. With a background in corporate social responsibility and communications, Ciara has managed small business development and mentoring programmes and managed major health campaign events.

Holding a first class honours in Communications, Ciara has also won several awards for re-launching a small business in eight weeks and doubling its sales in that time. Ciara travelled to India in 2006 witnessing some of the most deprived communities in the world.

She has mentored young men at risk of crime and coached community entrepreneurs at all levels. As well as holding down a full time job, Ciara’s greatest achievement yet is her energetic 16 month old son Ethan. “He has changed my life, he’s so much fun and keeps me on my toes! I couldn’t do it all without the great support of my husband and family. They help me to keep all the plates spinning!”