What drew you to SOFEA?
I wasn’t doing anything. I couldn’t get an apprenticeship or any sort of education elsewhere because of my grades from school. So I was sat at home for quite a few months doing nothing because no one would take me on. Then someone suggested SOFEA.
I came and gave it a go to see how I got on – and I’ve been here ever since.
What barriers has SOFEA helped you overcome?
Social anxiety. I always used to be a very socially awkward person. If I was sat in a group usually I’d be the one that wouldn’t say anything while everyone else would just be talking. I’m a bit more social and talkative with people now.
How has working here changed your life?
I’ve bought my own house with my partner – and I met my partner here too! But it’s also changed my life because someone gave me the opportunity to do some good work. Not many people have given me the chance in the past.
What has this place taught you that you didn’t know before?
That you can be accepted by people you wouldn’t think would accept you and give you a chance. My perspective on people has changed when I first meet them. Before I would have quite a bad impression but now I’m a bit more open-minded. Instead of judging them straight away and thinking ‘oh, they’re going to be like this’ I wait and speak to them first.