Side of a car, from the rear

Learning to drive has given me a sense of worth

Having left education in 2014, I was referred to the Work Programme in Gosport in the September. I had no work experience and was on sickness benefit due to severe anxiety and I lived with my mum who also had several health conditions, which meant I didn’t get out of the house much.

I was very anxious about attending Wheatsheaf Trust and going on my own, so I took two family members with me.  I felt I could not cope with strange environments or groups of people.

I also considered myself as ‘skills less’ and didn’t believe I could ever work. Because I had to attend, my Adviser suggested we took things very slowly starting with 1-1 sessions.

Gradually the family support was reduced, with only one family member coming with me but they waited outside and I went in on my own.

After a while of building up my confidence and trusting my Adviser, I was encouraged to attend the ESA Group and although I was very anxious about it my Adviser supported me.

By the third session, I made a friend in the kitchen area and slowly started to believe that there was a future for me and that I could achieve things for myself.

I decided to set myself a personal goal of starting driving lessons by the beginning of November 2015 and to date I have had 7 lessons, which is a real achievement for me.

Also, I am now attending all my WP appointments by myself which has reduced my anxiety considerably and increased my confidence and self esteem too.

Learning to drive has given me a sense of worth and I am slowly starting to talk about the next steps, including how to develop my skills further.

I like coming into Wheatsheaf Trust as it feels safe and I know you all now, thank you for helping me to move forward.