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Impact Stories

Adam’s story: “I’ve got a job and I’m excited for my future”

My name is Adam* and I’m a Young Leader at a Youth Zone in North West England. I joined before it had opened and was part of the development group. This group was created before the construction of the building to I helped represent the young people of the area. We came up with the name of the Youth Zone, concept and colour scheme. I visited other OnSide Youth Zones and learnt so many incredible things that we used to shape our Youth Zone. As soon as it opened, I have been attending regularly on the Sunday sessions and have now become a Young Leader which means I can help staff with support to members. This role has been great for me to get valuable experience in coaching football and helping the juniors with sport activities. I was really shy when I first started, I didn’t have a lot of friends or goals. I feel significantly better now, I think I am growing in confidence and growing in confidence in social situations.

I have had many challenges in the 3 years since coming to the Youth Zone, all of which, the staff have always been available to support me when I need it. Because of my disability I find it difficult to read people properly and that can often make me angry and frustrated. Staff at the Youth Zone are very patient and understanding with my disability and help me to work things through. I have discovered the gym which helps me channel my anger. Due to my deteriorating mental health among other things, I have found it difficult to stay in education. I have been unsuccessful with 2 previous colleges and was starting to lose confidence and motivation. Claire* at the Youth Zone helped me get onto the course that was right for me and I’m now studying coaching at a local college.

I like spending time with the staff and the friends that I have made at the Youth Zone. I have really enjoyed the residential trips and visiting other OnSide Youth Zones. I have recently gained employment thanks to the support of the Youth Zone. They have helped me with my CV writing and interview preparation. I’m now excited for my future as I start a new job alongside my college coaching qualification. I would like to recommend Youth Zones to anyone that needs somewhere to go, or simply just bored. It’s a really great place and I am very thankful for everything they’ve done for me.

 “Adam is a lovely young man, who has really grown in confidence. With a bit of time and encouragement he has taken huge strides in his development. I’ve seen him grow from a teenager to a young man very quickly. He’s testament that anything is possible if you work hard.” Claire, Youth Worker

*Names have been changed

“I have had many challenges in the 3 years since coming to the Youth Zone, all of which, the staff have always been available to support me when I need it.”