Corey Lane is a social activist from Barbados, who embodies the phrase “rising from adversity”, and using his own unfortunate circumstances as an impetus to help others in similar situations. At the age of 15, his mother died in childbirth. Around the same time, he witnessed the murder of a close friend. Those two events would have devastated most people but they had the opposite effect on Mr Lane. He dedicated his life to assisting at-risk youth who, like himself, grew up in challenging circumstances, incarcerated persons, and those living with HIV in Barbados.
One of his first ventures was the establishment of the Nature Fun Ranch (NFR) in 1998 (shortly after he lost his mother) to assist young people who, like himself, grew up in unfavourable conditions. The ranch works in conjunction with government rehabilitation centres and programmes across Barbados to provide guidance and respite for young people who live on the margins. Over its two decades, the Ranch has assisted more than 2,000 Barbadians by providing them with the foundation to make the right life choices to become what he describes as citizens of excellence.
The success of the Ranch has brought many accolades, inclusive of Prince Harry of the UK, who visited in 2016. In 2018, Barbadian Minister of Agriculture and Food Security, Indar Weir, praised the venture as one worthy of replication because of its self-sustaining model. However, Mr Lane’s contribution and influence in his community stretches far beyond this. Mr Lane has not only led the charge in assisting youth through his Ranch, but also by becoming an ambassador through the Live-UP campaign.
Other noteworthy areas of involvement include HIV/AIDS campaigns and rehabilitation programmes with prisoners in the island’s prisons. He earns his living as a consultant on social issues and social media development. He is also a talk radio host, and features on many television and radio programmes and other social platforms, where he delivers positive and uplifting messages to the youth.
Despite his success, Mr Lane continues to strive to improve the lives of young people and the community. His drive for continued success has gained him international recognition for his selfless pursuits to assist at-risk youth. His work has been recognised by the now Prime Minister of Barbados, The Rt Hon Mia Mottley, and he was awarded the Points of Light Award by Queen Elizabeth II in 2018, and by the Rotary Club of Barbados. In her reference for Mr Lane, Prime Minister Mottley wrote: “The importance of the work that Corey is undertaking at the NFR (Nature Fun Ranch) cannot be understated, given the many problems facing our youth at this time.”
At age 36 Mr Lane is the youngest person to be conferred with one of our awards in its 13-year history.