Rob's story

14-year-old Rob lives in a very poor household with his mother, her partner and two sisters. 

His mum has a substance misuse problem. The family has some small debt issues; they receive food vouchers and visit the local food bank weekly.

He was often seen in second-hand clothes donated by friends, which resulted in bullying at school.

As a result, he has behavioural and mental health issues. His school attendance is inconsistent. He lacks good social skills and is often left out of activities outside of youth club. Rob has been coming to our youth club for two years, and has developed a positive relationship and trust with youth workers, accessing support including one-to-one mentoring.

A youth worker suggested his mother contacted Greenwich Debt and Money Advice. This helped her feel less stressed and her substance misuse reduced as a result. Rob said that he is now living in a happier home.

Rob told us that he had a passion for cooking but never had the opportunity at home, so he joined our weekly healthy cooking sessions. This gave us the opportunity to discuss relationships, both positive and negative, as well as how people can be affected by others’ relationships.

As he was embarrassed about the condition of his clothes, we offered a £250 CACT bursary to buy a new winter coat, school uniform, underwear, trainers and two track suits. To promote a better relationship with each other and to spend quality time together, Rob and his mother researched the best deals on the high-street together.

Rob was so happy with his new uniform that his school attendance is now consistently above 95%. Rob sometimes now brings homework to the youth hub, where we provide computers and printing.

Increased self-esteem and better behaviour mean Rob is included by others in group activities outside youth sessions where other youths now speak more positively about Rob.

“I can’t tell you how happy I am for all you have done for my son. I never knew how much the youth service could support my son and our family. Thank you” Mother.

“I love coming to youth club and some day would like to become a professional chef and volunteer as a youth worker to help young people.” Rob.

Support the CACT bursary so we can help more people like Rob with a donation here - give between Tuesday 3 and Tuesday 10 December and your donation will be doubled until we reach our target.

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