"I can be an example for my young brothers and sisters and my nieces and nephews. I can show them that you can still achieve good things even though you live in a council house in Bootle!"
I first met YKids when I was in year 8 in school. Two YKids’ workers came into my class and did a project called the story project. We talked about what we wanted in our future and the kind of stories we wanted to tell with our lives.
Two years later I was doing my Duke of Edinburgh (DofE) award and needed a volunteer community placement. I remembered YKids and asked if I could get involved. I’ve done loads of different groups and projects. The regular groups for me were the bee-keeping group, Redi Extreme and Rise but I’ve also volunteered with the families’ projects and the groups for younger people. My favourite group that I volunteered with was the Christmas craft zone where we made a yule log from scratch. I love cake so that was amazing!
I’ve made so many friends at YKids. I loved some of the silly activities- especially the epic food challenge where we had to work in groups to make an iconic Liverpool building out of food. We made the big wheel and used jelly babies as people. Another group made the Radio City tower with a baguette and a cake! In Rise, I won a challenge where I had to eat a pancake without using my hands-I showed the lads that girls can win food challenges!
The thing that I most enjoyed was the bee-keeping group. This is something that is so unique that I would never be able to do without YKids. I used to be scared of bugs but now I stroke bees! We made lip balms which were great and had a go at face creams but that didn’t work as well. Extracting the honey was boss- the honey was the best thing I have ever tasted! Why do all my good memories involve food?!
I’ve learnt loads in YKids. I’ve definitely learnt to work in a team as this was something I never really used to enjoy doing. I used to prefer to rely on myself and only be responsible for me because that way I couldn’t be let down-but working in a team is what YKids is all about. I’m also more confident in who I am and what I want in my future. Volunteering was a big deal for me, I loved it! I liked having the responsibility and the fact that the younger children looked up to me. It made me realise that I could be a role model and this is something I try to be to the young members of my family.
I’m now at university in Derby studying a foundation course in forensic science and criminology. I’m the first person in my family to go away to university at age 18. I was terrified at first and didn’t know what to expect. We’re not a rich family so budgeting was a struggle for me. Being on my own was hard but I did it. I’m through the first term now and im really happy and proud of myself. I miss my family but like the fact that I can be an example for my young brothers and sisters and my nieces and nephews. I can show them that you can still achieve good things even though you live in a council house in Bootle. Ykids definitely taught me how to be a role model!
I loved my time at YKids and I’m definitely going to keep on popping in to say hello when im home from university!