Dylan first began working with Nicky on the 12-week Prince’s Trust Team Programme in December 2019. Groundwork Cheshire Lancashire and Merseyside, where Nicky works as a Talent Coach, host the Team Programme in Wigan and Leigh.
At the time, Dylan was low on confidence. He started the Team programme in January 2020 but in early March it was cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Nicky kept a line of communication open with Dylan. Just after his 18th birthday in August, Dylan contacted her asking for help - as he did not know what he was going to do next. Nicky spoke to him about GM’s Hidden Talent (having turned 18, Dylan was now eligible for support from the programme) and he was keen to sign up.
Dylan lived with his mum, step dad and six younger siblings.
“As the eldest he was expected to look after himself and was not given any money from his family,” said Nicky.
“He needed ID, a bank account and needed some type of financial support to help him live as an 18-year-old young man, and ultimately, he wanted a job.”
At the time Dylan was also waiting for an appointment with a specialist for an assessment for Autism and ADHD.
Using ‘beneficiary expenses’ that GMCVO distributes to all Delivery Partners, Nicky helped Dylan apply for a birth certificate, a driving licence and a bank account. She also helped him apply for Universal Credit and bought him the £10 Our Pass, so that he could travel on busses in Greater Manchester for free for 12 Months.
Nicky then arranged an interview for Dylan to complete a Prince's Trust traineeship programme hosted at Groundwork. Dylan was signed onto the October traineeship, but due to the pandemic he could not start the work placement element. He did however, attend Maths and English sessions every Friday.
Nicky said: “The Maths and English course helped Dylan realise he is more than capable of completing tasks and working with others, and the new environment took him out of his comfort zone.”
At this time, Dylan was told he had to move out of the family home as there was no room for him. Realising he needed work, Nicky helped him upload his CV to job sites.
In December, Dylan was taken on as an operative by ITBuffs, a computer refurbishment company based at Brooklands Mill in Leigh. In his first month of work Dylan was told he was employee of the month!
Reflecting on Dylan’s achievements, Nicky said: “Dylan has struggled in life, feeling like he has nowhere to turn. I have worked to show him to make small changes to contribute to bigger goals. Once he had a little bit of independence e.g. ID, a bank account, means of travel and some money, it seemed to change his whole outlook and vastly improved his mindset.
“He is now employed and has an increased sense of self-worth. The belief that he can steer his own course in life is evident. His next step is to live independently - something that seemed impossible when I first supported him.”