Thursday 12th December, 2013

12 days: “I get to talk about things. They are there for anything you need to tell them.” Connor*, 12

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Connor has had to face many challenges. He received a complex medical diagnosis aged 8 which included a diagnosis of Autism. He has had to deal with other changes including moving primary school 3 times and the challenges that being part of a big family can bring.

Connor was nervous about starting secondary school. In order to offer him some additional support around moving up he was referred to our Transitions Programme. He met with a group of his classmates every week with a Romsey Mill youth worker to discuss what life at secondary school would be like. The residential trip was a highlight for Connor and he really enjoyed trying new things and especially liked the zip wire.

Once at secondary school, Connor seemed to settle in well. He came along to a Romsey Mill Youth Club afterschool and really enjoyed attending. The group gave him the opportunity to play games, to cook things, to chat to mates and to have fun.  After a while at secondary school, Connor started to struggle and became disruptive in class, finding it difficult to get on well with other children. He was also being aggressive at home.

At this point, Connor and his family began to be supported by the Aspire Family Support Worker who helps to ensure that Connor’s needs are being met and that his Mum feels supported. Connor is now taught in smaller groups in school and has begun the process of being assessed for an Educational Statement of Special Educational Needs. Connor’s Mum hopes that in the future he will be able to get on with life and she won’t always need to worry about him. 

Conner still sees a Youth Worker at Romsey Mill regularly and says he values being able to talk to her as he feels that she can help sort out any problems. After a year and a half at secondary school, Connor now says that ‘school and friendships are good.’ In the future he wants to be a designer or an artist and is motivated to work hard at school to achieve his aims.

*Name has been changed