C3 Church in Cambridge has been making a huge difference to the lives of children like Priya through their partnership with TLG Early Intervention. Sixteen-year-old Priya started weekly coaching sessions with Penny (TLG EI coach) when she was struggling in school. Priya’s attitude towards life dramatically changed as a result of regular support she received. Here’s Priya talking about her journey from negative thoughts and hopelessness to a positive outlook!
“Before I started coaching sessions with Penny, I was finding it difficult to settle in my classes. I had been out of school for a number of months and it was hard trying to get back into everyday school life. I found it difficult to talk to others and make friends and I had some bad experiences falling in with the wrong people. I got in trouble a lot back then. I didn’t see school as a place to learn and I didn’t feel confident in myself.
“I had a really negative view on everything. I couldn’t see myself doing anything that I would have enjoyed or looked forward to in my future, so I didn’t try to do well at anything. I didn’t see much use in trying in things that I was unsure about or leaving my comfort zone as those things made me feel stressed.
“But things started to get better for me once I began coaching with Penny. Penny is a very positive person! She would always find a way to make new things easy to understand. The first time we met I was really nervous. Although I didn’t speak much, she still gave me time and made it much more comfortable for me to open up.
“Penny was consistently calm and understanding so I never felt rushed into talking about things. She always offered good advice about things that weren’t going well. If I was getting into a lot more trouble than usual, she would help me figure out what the problem was. We did some great activities together! A simple one I enjoyed was the colouring, as I would come out of a difficult lesson and be feeling stressed. Picking a colouring I liked and being able to have that time to calm myself and talk was very helpful.
“Penny invited me and my mum to a few gatherings at the church as well as a few meet-ups, where we can talk and catch up. This really makes me appreciate her care and kindness towards not only me but my family too!
“I’m definitely much more positive now. I’d also say I’m much more hard working and want to achieve more. Instead of giving up I’m able to keep pushing on! Having someone give their guidance on things I was unsure about as well as having tasks that gave me time out of class to calm and recap has been really helpful. I even tried many new things such as clay making and baking that I wouldn’t have done before.
“I think that if I hadn’t had time with Penny, I could’ve been much worse now. Coaching has not only helped with school but also home life. It’s made me much more confident in myself. I’m going on to do A Levels now! To other young people who are struggling, I would say: don’t try to copy others, because at the end of the day there’s only one you so try to be the best version of you that you can be.”
Click here to download a free colouring resource. Priya found colouring a helpful destressing tool, so we thought you might too!