James initially engaged with Positive Futures via the Get On Track programme. He was a member of the first cohort and registered whilst signing on at one of the City job centres. James was a very shy member of the programme, didn’t feel comfortable addressing the group as a whole and was reluctant to fully take part in all the activities. Even so he turned up for all the sessions, walking from the other side of Leeds to the facilities we were using on days he didn’t have money for a bus. He gradually made friends within the group and his confidence began to build. Having opened up to the staff working on the programme it became apparent that James had a huge number of issues which were affecting his everyday life and impacting on his ability to find employment.
Positive Futures supported him in accessing additional support to address some of those issues. He attended workshops around budgeting, sessions on drug misuse and had appointments to address housing issues. Through grants and Welfare Aid he was able to apply for funding to get recognised forms of ID. He was then able to open a bank account. The ID has also enabled him to get a DBS form. This has led to him volunteering within Youth Point and also enabled us to link him with Positive Futures sessions within his local community. He now supports our coaches on two nights a week coaching 10-14 and 14-19 year olds in football and multi sports. Through Positive Futures he has achieved his Level 1 FA football coaching award and is working towards his level 2 via additional modules put in place by the West Riding FA.
James is now enrolled at Leeds City College on a full time Sport and Exercise course. It is hoped on the completion of this course and through volunteer experience he will be in the perfect position to apply for jobs within Leeds Sport and Active Lifestyles.
James continues to volunteer on the Positive Futures programme and attends our follow up sessions as part of the Get On Track programme. Although the issue of drug misuse hasn’t been addressed totally his outlook on life now is far more positive. He has the confidence to try to resolve problems himself and is in a better position to know where he can go for support and guidance. He has structure and routine in his life and this is encouraging him to focus on long term goals. Although the major issue currently is the lack on regular income he can see that the course he is engaged on will have long term benefits with regards to an on-going career.
Are you interested in being part of the next project starting soon? Or know somone who might be? For more information go to http://www.leeds.gov.uk/sports/Documents/Leaflet%20-%20Leeds1.pdf