Before coming to Llamau, I wasn’t in a good place. My days were full of constant nightmares and I could see my dark past constantly, as if it were all happening again. But now, I see a future brighter than the sun.

I was first placed in foster care at the age of two, and spent the majority of my childhood being moved from home to home around South Wales. I struggled to settle as a child because I had never had the chance to call somewhere my home.

At the age of 17, I moved into my first flat on my own. Adjusting to living on my home was hard, I felt very alone a lot of the time. I was having suicidal thoughts on a daily basis, and turned to alcohol and drugs as a way of coping with the way I was feeling.

It soon became clear that I wasn’t coping on my own. I reached out to my family in England to ask if I could stay with them, but moving away only made my mental health worse. When I moved to England, I became very violent and aggressive towards others. I had attacked my father and also my mother’s landlord. My life was out of control.

I knew that I couldn’t go on like this. At the age of 18, I moved into one of Llamau's supported housing projects. Back in South Wales, I had the support of Llamau, Barnardos, friends and my foster family. I also started to see a GP about my ongoing mental health issues. Llamau offered me a chance to become an independent adult, teaching me how to cook, take care of myself and manage my money. It felt like the chance for a fresh start.

Once I felt ready, I moved into my own flat. This was a very steep learning curve and I am still learning! It has always been important to me to make my own money rather than having to rely on the Government for support. During this time, I attempted to attend various courses and got a number of short term jobs, but I was still struggling to cope with my mental health issues and found it difficult to sustain any of these. I knew I needed help to get back on my feet, and so I got back in touch with Llamau to ask for support.

I attended Llamau’s Learning 4 Life centre which helped to change the way I deal with life’s challenges. Four months ago was a huge turning point for me, I now felt happy, confident and ready to get back on my own two feet again. I wanted to be back in work and to survive on my own.

LLamau helped me with creating a CV, building my qualifications and gave me career support. I've always wanted to work in the construction industry and gain a trade. Llamau helped me to find a work placement with a local construction business, where I have now been working for the past two months. Things are going really well, I’ve really enjoyed myself and learned a lot about the industry and also myself.

In the future I want to secure full time employment and to gain a trade. One day I want to own my own business, and to be able to buy a home of my own.

Things aren’t perfect, and I still have good days and bad days. The difference now is that know I have Llamau to turn to for support. I think that if Llamau hadn’t helped me, I would probably have ended up dead.

Before coming to Llamau, I wasn’t in a good place. My days were full of constant nightmares and I could see my dark past constantly, as if it were all happening again. But now, I see a future brighter than the sun.