Asher & Tessa’s Story…
Asher, 14, lives with his mother Tessa who is a single parent. Tessa is currently unemployed but previously worked at M&S and Imperial Fashion, an online fashion retailer. Asher’s father is an alcoholic, resulting in Asher experiencing much chaos and upheaval, which affected him emotionally. Asher has also recently been diagnosed with learning difficulties and struggles with literacy and numeracy.
Tessa told us: “As Asher has got older, I was starting to find things becoming increasingly difficult. From a young age he has witnessed his father’s excessive drinking and this has affected him emotionally. I needed to help boost Asher’s confidence, relieve his stress and help him with his general wellbeing.
“I’m currently with ‘Family First’ and the ‘Education Psychology Service’, who worked closely with Asher to explore various learning techniques. It was there that I got to hear about the Fashion & Textile Children’s Trust (FTCT). I contacted them and applied for funding for swimming lessons to boost Asher’s confidence, and music lessons too, as he was getting good feedback from the school music teacher.
“I felt nervous about approaching FTCT, but when I called it felt as if I’d been handed a lifeline. Help came at just the right time. Everyone at FTCT was so helpful and didn’t treat me in a negative way. They made me feel confident about asking for help. They didn’t judge me at all – they’re such a wonderful charity.
“If it wasn’t for the extra support the grant helped to fund, Asher would’ve stayed in his shell and hidden away. I can see such an improvement in his confidence and he has a real sense of release, too. He often talks about his music and swimming lessons, and he’s now going to go on to do the Lifeguard Course to learn life skills.
“I can’t thank FTCT enough. The people are remarkable; I felt a weight lifted off my shoulders. The team at FTCT is caring and considerate. It’s just fantastic how they help people to reach their potential.”*Names and pictures may have been changed to protect identities