THE creator of a comedy workshop has become the poster boy - and role model - for a new campaign to encourage people to volunteer.
Rui Jorge, 21, of Homefield Road, Edgware, is one of four young people to be chosen as the faces of the Good for Nothing project from volunteering charity 'v'.
Rui started a stand-up comedy club, called Grab Your Mic, to provide teenagers with the opportunity to improve their confidence and public speaking skills through the innovative medium of comedy.
Seven sessions have been held at a hall in Station Road, Edgware, and another five are planned this month.
Through the publicity material - posters, videos and a profile on the web - he has become a local celebrity, but getting recognised has not fazed the young man, who is already well-known in the area.
Commenting on his new fame, Rui said: "Publicity is important; it backs up what I'm saying."
The poster boy explains that being recognised is a good thing as it shows local youngsters that someone from their own community is making it big and aiming high is not impossible.
As the eldest of seven children, Rui has always enjoyed looking after those around him.
After attending Deansbrook Junior School in Edgware, then completing his A-levels at Edgware School, now London Academy, the 21-year-old attended Brunel University in Uxbridge to study business management and accounting.
However, while he was away studying, Rui had concerns for his siblings because of crime, and the stabbing of a friend made him realise that he wanted to make his community a better place in which to live. It turned the enjoyment of helping others into a vocation.
Rui realised that he might be able to have much more of an effect out on the street than in the world of academics.
He recalled: "I was sitting in my room studying accountancy and realised there was more to life. At this time it's your actions that count."
Not always the self-assured young man he is now, Rui grew more confident when he had to approach people to promote Brunel Entrepreneurs' Society events.
"I found it tough at first," he admitted. "I wasn't used to it. But the more I talked to people, the more I overcame my fears."
With this experience, he was encouraged to apply to 'v' to put into place a training programme where young people learn essential social skills such as public speaking through practising performance comedy.
Rui said proudly the motivations for his work were the very people he assists.
"I've always had the desire to help others. They inspire me," he said.
* If you want to get involved with this campaign go to www.vinspired.com for more information.