Darren Woods

Bermuda Day Grand Marshal 2022, Togetherness

Over the last ten years, Darren Woods has dedicated his life to service to the community. From his day job as the Youth and Outreach Manager for the Ministry of National Security’s Gang Violence Reduction Team (GVRT) to his role as an event organizer and experience curator, Mr. Woods desires to see young Bermudians uniting together positively and peacefully. The 35-year-old got his start working in the non-profit sector in 2012, a year after losing his close family-friend Jason Smith to gun violence, in what is widely understood to be a case of mistaken identity. The tragedy impacted Mr. Woods’ life significantly, causing him to leave the finance and accounting industry to begin work at the Family Centre, a charity providing critical intervention services to children suffering from emotional, social, behavioral, and trauma-based challenges. While there, Darren explored his passion for community development, positive youth engagement, and youth empowerment. He specifically enjoyed working with young men who experienced being marginalized, overlooked or excluded from society.  During his seven years as a Community Support Worker, Mr. Woods supported the strategic planning, program design, fund development and delivery of various different programs including: Beyond Rugby, Youth Leadership Academy, Building My Future and Youth Police Initiative. In 2019, Mr. Woods made another transition – this time to the GVRT, a group which aims to tackle gang violence and anti-social behavior through a series of strategically designed prevention, intervention and rehabilitation programs and initiatives.

Today, he works closely with various GVRT programs such as Redemption Farm, Work Placement and Mentoring Initiative, Hype Kings Program, Excellence Program, Restorative Justice Sessions and the Coordinated Crisis Response Team.  Through the role he provides individual case management and also leads small group sessions, personal development/ life skills training and job coaching/ employment support. According to Mr. Woods, success looks different for each young person he works with, however, any growth is considered a small win. In his spare time, Mr. Woods is a passionate tennis player and entertainment enthusiast. He loves bringing people together and creating unique experiences for people to have a good time through the groups he’s a part of, including: Party People Entertainment, Off Level BDA, Lotus, and Afro Sommelier.