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In focus: Developing stronger relationships
Since Clive and Fiona met, Clive has become more confident and is happy talking and sharing his opinions.
Clive is a very shy 9-year-old boy. Despite being well above average academically, he will not call out in class. He gets very embarrassed when praised, yet is desperate to please his friends. Clive has become the class clown and while he follows other groups of children around, he never integrates with them.
Clive has bullied younger children, used racist language and encouraged fights between others. He has also been in trouble outside of school, stealing money from home and selling fake drugs.
Clive's mum has experienced severe domestic violence, which was seen by Clive and his siblings. Previously when Clive met new people, he covered himself in a corner and refused to speak.
Fiona, Clive's mentor, has provided him with positive feedback and reinforcement, giving him time to adjust to having a new person in his life. Together, they have visited sports centres to increase his confidence in sports, been to the library, drawn together and carried out research for future sessions at internet cafés.
By working in this way, Clive has introduced Fiona to things he likes. Over four months, Clive has developed much better relations with his siblings – now they share activities and books at home.
Clive's mum has said that the home "is much quieter in the evenings now!". Clive is talking to new people, asking questions and offering opinions. There has been a clear improvement in a short space of time – now Clive can explain what he would rather do on sessions, order tickets and speak to people in shops.
In focus: Controlling behaviour
Talking things through with Terry has helped Joshua to calm himself down instead of getting angry.
Joshua is a 9-year-old boy who lives with his mother and older sister. He also has an older brother who has served one prison sentence and is awaiting trial for another incident. Joshua's mother is trying to improve the family situation, but she still finds it extremely difficult to cope. His father rarely visits.
Joshua was referred to Chance UK by the Pupil Referral Unit, which is for children who struggle to cope with mainstream education. He is a kind, shy and thoughtful child but he finds it hard to control his anger and can resort to violence. Joshua requested a ‘funful' mentor and was matched with Terry, a man in his late 20s who shares his interest in sport.
Joshua and Terry have had a wonderful year. They have been to a rugby cup final at Wembley, which Joshua described as "the best day of his life", played football, and taken Joshua's dog for many long walks, giving them the chance to talk.
Joshua's behaviour has been challenging at times, for example, he threw things around a restaurant when the food he wanted wasn't available. However, Terry has allowed him to talk about his fears and feelings and helped him understand what behaviour is acceptable, and what isn't. Joshua has gradually learned to control his behaviour and he can now calm himself down, avoiding a tantrum.
Joshua's mother really appreciates Chance UK, as Joshua now has a strong male role model. She hopes that "everything he has learnt from Terry has a strong and lasting impact."