Tim was referred to the Moving Forward Project in February 2015. He was a care leaver, and although he had anger issues had never been in trouble with the law. He was, however, using legal highs and cannabis on a daily basis, and this affected his motivation and was starting to affect his health. Tim was very aware of the detrimental effect that his drug use was having on him, but relied on drugs as self-medication to help with his anger issues.

Due to a combination of personal issues and continued substance misuse, Tim’s motivation vanished, and this of course resulted in a poor attitude to others and very low attendance on the project. However, through the combined effort of project staff, external agencies and most importantly Tim himself, he made an incredible change to his lifestyle.

Through willpower alone, Tim stopped all his drug use, and the change in his personality was dramatic. From surly and argumentative, Tim’s warm and caring personality shone through, and he became committed to improving himself. His attendance improved to 100% and he was excited about working in retail and the opportunities that he could now imagine!

With Tim working alongside the CBSA training staff, a personal development plan was created to ensure that the Moving Forward programme would meet his individual needs. Tim developed his basic skills, especially improving his mathematical knowledge which he knew would help him in the retail environment when working with money, calculating reductions and stock taking. Once Tim could see the link between training and his future job prospects, he gave his all and worked hard to achieve his qualification.

He also undertook a work preparation programme alongside his maths training, which allowed him to understand the skills and qualities required for a position in retail. He then wrote his first ever CV, practiced applying for jobs, learnt interview skills and practiced them in mock interviews, whilst all the time boosting his self-esteem by interacting with other participants and staff at the CBSA.

Tim’ positive attitude lead him to completing his training programme and moving on to finding employment through the project. He was successful in an interview with BHS, and was offered a work placement with the retail giant. However, as the placement was not available for a few weeks, Tim once again showed his commitment by agreeing to undertake general office duties at a local office to gain experience in the world of work. He slotted in effortlessly to the office team, and was a pleasure to work with. Nothing was too much trouble, and he brightened up the office every day, and on his last day, staff gave him a goodbye card and some cake to wish him well in his new role.

Tim is now on his work placement at a large retail store and continues to improve and learn every day he is there. He has shown himself to be hard working, punctual and will take on any task. His new colleagues have taken him into their team, supporting him both professionally and personally, and he has made many new friends through work.

Tim has shown us all that given an opportunity, he could turn his life around and become the person he always wanted to be. At his latest monthly review with CBSA staff, he stated “I wish I had been better at the start of training, and am grateful that the staff gave me another chance. Thank you.”

  • Identities have been changed