A Thrive story – Alfie’s Mum.
We were first introduced to Thrive 3 years ago when Alfie was extremely unsettled in school. Alfie seemed to be forever in trouble, unsettled in most classes and it just felt like he had to push all boundaries. Alfie felt insecure, anxious and a failure in every lesson. Alfie has dyslexia and really struggles with information overload at the start of lessons and reading and retaining knowledge.
School offered support through him having access to a laptop in lessons, but when we discussed this, he became upset and said, ‘I already look stupid in every lesson, giving me a laptop just tells everyone in class that I am stupid’. His confidence disappeared and instead he would revert to distractive behaviours to divert attention away from learning. There were additional negative behaviours spilling over in to break times and coming to Thrive was very much seen as a last chance.
Initially Alfie’s sessions at Thrive were based around building self-esteem and self-belief. There were many outdoor activities which could not have captured his love for adventures and woodland more. Alfie is at his happiest when in the woods being creative, sat around a campfire. As time passed, his self-belief increased and life at school just seemed to become a calmer place. It was as if one day a week he had respite, a release from his anxiety.
After a year Alfie switched to the more academic based day at Thrive. He seemed ready for this transition and obviously felt that he could ‘catch up’ in his ‘safe place’. He had trust, and now developed ambition and goals to work towards.
Alfie developed great bonds with all the mentors and held respect for the help they were giving. They took great interest in not only his academic progress but also that of his hobbies and new weekend work. Alfie’s attitudes changed, his negative points at school went down, detentions were greatly reduced, and his academic grades became stronger.
Entering Year 11 not only did Alfie now believe in himself, but he had an immense sense of pride and direction.
Alfie attended an open day at college, we applied on the day, and he has been offered a place on a construction skills course. Alfie then set a goal to get additional work in the holidays. He completed a CV, printed this off and delivered these to all shops in the village. He got an interview and got the job.
The support from Thrive does more than support academic achievements. The support of Thrive has promoted strong emotional well-being, strength of self-belief, development of pride and created a place to share and celebrate all achievements. Alfie has indeed ‘thrived’. We will forever be grateful for the opportunity to link in to Thrive and the amazing team at The Mix who have helped create a strong, independent, ambitious young man.