Hi, I’m a mentor at Young Gloucestershire and have been for over a year now.

Well what can I say, but it has been an experience and a truly inspirational one at that. The team were able to match my skills, personality (don’t know how they did that!) and experience up with someone that I hope has truly benefited from me being there. Being able to talk to someone that you have been able to build trust and confidence with really helps.

Over time, I have been able to help a young person start to follow their dreams and create a future that they can be proud of. For me this has brought just as much empowerment for myself also. I really do believe that by being able to confide in someone who is non judgemental but remains encouraging through time of needs can help anyone (especially a young person). Being able to be that person that you can air your views and sometimes frustrations on can be a challenge at times, but is really rewarding when you see that young person find their footing and start to strive forward.

I think that we all need a little encouragement and a hand to guide us or show an alternative path in which way we can go. Being able to support a young person when they feel embarrassed, ashamed, distressed, sad and yes even excited at times is actually OK.

Reflecting back on my journey with Young Gloucestershire so far, I can really say it’s been good, made me see myself in a different light and inspired me too. I have found and developed new life skills I didn’t think I’d be able to display. But I would encourage anyone and everyone to give it a try. When you think you have nothing to offer, you will find that you have so much to give, go on, push a little forward, someone DOES need you.