James came to YMCA Norfolk after experiencing troubles whilst living at home with his Mum, who has Bipolar Disorder, and feeling like it was affecting his own mental health and causing him to struggle in school.
“I moved into YMCA central in January 2020, I have been involved with YMCA just over a year now.
I have been supported in many ways, firstly by being able to get away from the toxic home environment that I was in.
“Since moving I have learnt to be more independent. I am now able to look after myself in ways I thought I wouldn’t be able to, such as cooking for myself, making decisions, managing my money and learning how to keep a tenancy.
“I feel that I have achieved the ability to push myself and do things out of my comfort zone that I haven’t done before, I have taken part in lots of positive activities and managed to get through the lockdowns that were imposed.
“My hope for the future is that I will have my own accommodation and get a job in the IT Field. At the moment I am applying to get either in to college or work as an apprentice to gain experience and IT qualifications.
“YMCA has given me the second chance at my life, so that I can have a better quality of life and learn to stand on my own. It has given the chance to build on my independence skills that I would not of got the chance do to if I was at home. I am proud of how far I have come in a short space of time.”
“For me, moving from Central to My Place has been the favourite part for me so far, I had my own flat with a kitchen and making my flat feel like a safe home for the first time, and the staff believing in me and that I would and can cope. The staff at My Place have let me work out for myself what I can and cannot do and have given me the opportunity to ask for help when I need it, and I have been made to feel heard and listened to which I never got at home.”
Names and images have been changed to maintain confidentiality.