After battles with depression, anxiety and self-harming. Lynn, 17 lands her dream job of working with animals Lynn, aged 17 had recently moved to Midlothian from Fife when she was referred to Street League. Lynn has been in care since she was 4 years old, moving from different foster homes and units frequently until 2016 where she came to Midlothian to live in a Residential Unit in Penicuik. Lynn had very low confidence and very little self-esteem or self-worth. Due to various different moves, Lynn had struggled to maintain positive relationships and particularly found it difficult to interact with males due to bad experiences. Lynn was battling depression, anxiety and self-harm. At the time of Lynn’s exams, she moved schools from Fife to Midlothian and was tutored at home- where she managed to gain two National 5 qualifications and some more National 4’s. Lynn was particularly proud of her B in National 5 Biology! Lynn really struggled with employability skills and did not feel ready for employment, despite being desperate to work! However, whilst living in Fife Lynn had volunteered at a local Pet Shop which she thoroughly enjoyed due to her love and passion for animals. Unfortunately, due to lots of moving around Lynn had to give up this volunteering position. Actions Lynn was referred to Street League by a support worker at Midlothian Council. Lynn was struggling with social anxiety and the first time we met with her she ran out of the library mid-conversation as it was all a bit too much for her. Lynn had explained to us that due to past bad experiences with men that Lynn would often feel very uneasy in their company. However- with the support of Street League staff Lynn integrated perfectly into a group of 16, 14 of which were male. Very quickly Lynn became a well-loved member of the group and interacted with every member of the group! Lynn’s goal was to get employment- although she was very motivated, Lynn’s lack of confidence and self-esteem were holding her back. Lynn was very passionate about working with animals. She wanted to earn money and work towards becoming more independent. Through many different workshops including self-esteem and confidence Lynn quickly became a very vocal member of the group and would open up and share her experiences- becoming very self-aware. We saw Lynn’s confidence and self-esteem improve week by week. We worked with Lynn to create a C.V- the first one she had ever made and helped Lynn job-search. Lynn took part in mock interviews which she feels really helped to prepare her for her interviews at Charles River. When Lynn first joined Street League she was not keen on the football element of the course. By week 3 she was slide tackling & winning the crossbar challenge! The football element of the course also helped Lynn’s confidence and team-working skills, forming positive relationships with everyone on the course. By submitting her C.V and application to Charles River Laboratories Lynn was offered an interview- we supported Lynn by practicing for the interview in mock interviews and driving Lynn there to show support. As a result of the support and coaching from Street League, Lynn was ready to search for employment. Through job-search support and help with an application Lynn was offered an interview with Charles River Laboratories as an Assistant Animal Technician- a dream job for Lynn working with animals & perfectly suited. Lynn passed THREE interviews, two via the telephone and one face to face and was soon offered the job. Lynn is now 10 months into the job with Charles River and is loving it. All staff “sing her praises”. Lynn is proud of having 100% attendance and is constantly volunteering to do overtime, working evenings and weekends! Lynn is getting great support and training at Charles River, both personally and professionally. Lynn proudly spoke of how she received a pay-rise last month due to her hard work and effort and explained that she is working towards her ‘home office license’ which will allow her to have more responsibilities in her role in working with the animals. Out with work, Lynn is proud that she now lives in her own tenancy and is no longer in a residential unit and has booked to take her first trip abroad this summer with her earnings! “Street League has really helped me with my confidence. Not only in myself but having confidence in other people too. Going to Street League made me happy. I loved getting to know people and loved seeing people believe in me for once. I enjoyed the laughter and being part of a big group! Street League helped me apply for my job at Charles River and even drove me to my interview, after practicing a lot during mock interviews with Rebecca- for once I felt confident and when I got there I wasn’t worried. I got the job after passing 3 interviews! I’m now 8 months into the job and although it can sometimes be tough- it’s great. I am doing something that I love, working with animals (rats & mice). Street League is something you want to wake up for. I even joined in with the football. I have done other courses before and always found them boring, Street League wasn’t like that, it was fun and we still did get proper support and help to get a job at the same time. Without Street League, I truly think I would be nowhere. I would be unemployed and still have a lack of faith in myself. I am now living on my own, have booked a holiday and I am loving work, the money and the people I work with. Street League is great and that staff there helped me more than most people ever have in my life- Thank You! “ To find out more about our programmes, Click here. Or to join Street League, Click here.