We were involved with Social Services and YOT team referred me through to Crea8ing Careers because my eldest son was going off the rails, hanging out with the “wrong” kids and getting himself into trouble. I used to go in all guns blazing and start roaring at him, which made things worse and I didn’t know what to do.
The courses taught me how to consider their feelings, talk to them more effectively and put myself back into their shoes. Now, things are much better, he’s not getting into trouble. He used to be regularly suspended from school but since I started doing the courses, we have not had single exclusion. My son is now doing brilliantly and is looking at going to college and apprenticeships, and he is looking at voluntary work too.
I have loved the support that I got from them. I felt able to just turn up and say anything without worrying about what kind of look I would get or what people might think. It made me feel less isolated and realise that I was not alone, and that other people were having the same kind of struggles that I was.
The courses have helped me and others realise that our children having a diagnosis for things like ADHD and ASD is not the end of the world and that there is stuff that can be done to help, without always just being considered “the naughty” child.
It has meant that I have the knowledge about mental health and what's going on in the brain to be able to offer support and advice to him and others, explaining what is actually going on, which has massively improved his mental health and my confidence in dealing with things.
I started volunteering with them after doing the ACEs recovery course which sparked my passion and motivation for helping others. The children’s programme was amazing to be able to give back, as I have lived with children with similar issues myself and being able to support other parents has been amazing. I did my safeguarding certificate, Lego Therapy training and got my DBS all done by them. I'm thinking about getting qualifications to work with children.
My mum and husband have noticed the change and he even jokes “who are these people and what have they done to my wife”. I am so much calmer and more able to deal with things without getting mouthy and creating drama. I can just walk away now. I have noticed that my children are also dealing with things better and able to use more positive coping strategies.
All the groups are so supportive, and I haven’t felt uncomfortable being in any of them even though there were new people I didn’t know. I love how we can keep in touch with each other in all the groups and even if we go quiet for a while, we are still included in everything and always feel able to jump back in whenever. I have been with them for over a year and know they are there whenever I need them. Their graduations for parents are really great because they make you feel special and really proud of yourself, especially for people that really haven’t had much praise in their lives.
During lockdown, they called all the time to check on us, delivered afternoon tea on VE day and invited us to virtual events to keep us feeling positive. I even nominated one of the team for the Wirral View Acts of Kindness.