Case Study 1Tall Ships Adventure
The base was given a chance to take a group of young people on a Catamaran from Portsmouth and into the Solent for four days, learning how to sail it for themselves. Although the majority of the activity was paid for in the form of a bursary and funding, the young people had to raise the remainder of the money themselves.
The group consisted of six girls all with very different personalities and issues, including;
- Two who had an attendance of just 60%
- Lack of social skills (which lead to issues when mixing and making friends with other young people)
- One young person who was involved with a disengaged group and who wanted to break away
- Underachieving at school
- Socially unacceptable behaviour
- Two with very strong characters
All the girls were from very different social groups and didn’t integrate with each other in daily life. Getting along with the other members of the group was essential on the trip as was working as part of a team; all of the girls worked hard to get the most out of the experience, showing great discipline and pulling together when required. As part of the course they all obtained a “Royal Yachting Association Level 1 in Sailing” qualification.
Since returning from the trip:
- The attendance of the two girls has increased
- The young person who was involved with the group has gained the courage to break away and make a new circle of friends
- Confidence levels in all the young people have increased
- Social and Life Skills have improved with most of the young people demonstrating the ability to make positive choices
Case Study 2Rise Anti-Social Behaviour Programme
Young person A was 12 when he was referred to The base by his school pastoral team. The team were worried that his attendance had dropped and when he was in school his behaviour was poor. There was a family history of neglect and both mother and father known to the school and Police for their anti-social behaviour. As well as young person A there are two brothers - one currently in prison and one at risk of being taken into care. The pastoral team had tried to engage with the family but with little success.
The base invited young person A’s mother to visit us and to find out about the program. She was happy to come and spoke with the Youth Team at length about his home life and behaviour. She was very concerned that he had been skipping school and did not want him ‘turning out like his brother’. She claimed to have no idea why young person A behaved in such a way and assured The base that she would do her best to make sure he attended the program.
On week one The base sent a taxi to collect young person A in order to maximize the chances of his attending. Although quiet, he participated well throughout the first session and made new friends easily. By session two he had confided in a youth worker that the reason he didn’t go to school was due to his peers bullying him. He attended all six sessions, gaining confidence as the weeks went on, until he finally felt able to talk to the school pastoral team regarding the bullying.
Young person A made such good progress during the programme that he was invited to come back in a mentoring role for the next six week course. While performing this role it became apparent that there was a massive change in his attitude - he became more helpful, less aggressive and generally displayed a happier demeanour. His school also reported back that he had shown a big improvement in both attendance and behaviour.
Upon reflection young person A felt that attending the group had given him something positive to do and had help keep him out of trouble:
‘I have loved coming and don’t want to leave. If I was at home on Saturdays my brother would get me doing stuff that I did not want to do, stuff that made mum cross, like stealing him cans of coke from the local shop’ - (Young person A Nov 2014).
Through self-evaluations and discussions with his school, the pastoral team and his mother The base can demonstrate that young person A has achieved the following outcomes:
- Extended social circle
- Improved attendance and behaviour at school
- Improved behaviour at home
- Raised aspirations and self-respect
- Improved knowledge and understanding of how his behaviour affects others
- Happier and healthier lifestyle
Case Study 3Claire's Story
The base asked one young people to tell us the impact they had had on their life. The following was what they said:
“Hi I’m Claire. I’m on the edge of care. I am in danger of becoming N.E.E.T.*. This is my story.
“Since the age of 8 I have been moved around the country, in and out of the care system, through no fault of my own. I have attended over 10 schools in 8 years. It’s been crap.
“I moved back home with Mum and we both tried hard, but after so many years of being let down I didn’t want to go to school and now social services have had to get involved.
“And then I found The base. The base has given me someone to talk to, someone who listens to me and a place to escape to. They have supported me to stay at school, they talk to the school when I lose my temper and help me to see things differently.
“The base gives me fun things to do, I have been climbing, canoeing, been on Segways and lots more. These activities help to challenge me and prove that I can do things if I try hard enough. They have helped me to make new friends – something that’s been hard before.
“I love volunteering with the younger groups, it makes me feel like I belong. I have recently been away on a residential; it was the best experience ever. It helped me to learn to put up with other people and not just walk away. This is a skill I have learnt to use at school.”
(*NEET is Not in Education, Employment or Training)