I ended up in a hostel for the homeless in Macclesfield, this was not what I had been use to; I had had my own flat through Next Step. Had I done what was asked of me and been a good tenant I would have been able to stay in the property and taken on the lease myself, like other young people in my area. I recently went to the Bolton office to collect my washing machine that Next Step kindly stored for me. I spoke to the staff there whom where interested in what I was doing now. I explained that I wished I could return to Next Step as I now realise how hard the real world is. I am now settled in the Luton area, I have a steady girlfriend, whom I live with, I am the step father of her two children aged 3 and 5 and we plan to marry in July 2008.
I stopped self harming before I left Next Step and I am proud to say that I have not self harmed since, although I still receive medication for my depression this has been reduced and I am now aware that it is not wise to just stop taking it, hopefully within the next two months I will stop taking medication altogether.
I have had employment since leaving the programme, however I am unemployed at the moment but I am seeking employment with my local refuge company.
I have been really positive since the programme ended and I would like to thank Helen Griffiths for her help and support. I would also like to say to other young people if you're lucky enough to join Next Step work with them as it's for your own benefit. I would recommend Next Step to anyone.