If not for your support, Matt* reckons he would be in a gang or living on the streets.
Matt’s childhood was spent shuffling between separated parents and being in care. A failure to connect at school and becoming a father while still in his late teens, means Matt could easily have become a crime statistic. However, your support of Visionwest pushed his life in a totally different direction.
Matt’s turnaround began the morning he looked at his tiny son and decided he deserved a better life. Someone suggested he contact Visionwest. Matt says that suggestion and your ongoing support of Visionwest meant he was able to receive the help that enabled him to turn his life around.
Matt enrolled in our Pae Aronui youth training and employment programme. He applied for desperately needed emergency housing and, within the day, was placed in a two-bedroom unit enabling him to escape many of the negative influences in his life. Then, during the time it took him to get back on his feet, he received emergency food from Visionwest’s Pātaka Kai.
The great news is that, through the Pae Aronui programme, Matt was introduced to a builder who gave him a job!
Without your support young men like Matt can easily fall into trouble or despair. With your support, he has employment, a home and ongoing mentoring from one of Visionwest’s youth mentors who will ensure he settles into his new job and creates the family life he so wants to provide for his partner and son.
Here’s what Matt says about his life now:
“It’s easy to say what difference Visionwest and Pae Aronui have made in my life because I know what my life would be like if I hadn’t enrolled here. It’s made my life stable and has brought stability to my family. Most of all, it gave me the confidence to apply for a job. That’s huge for me. Having a job I really enjoy and that will enable me to support myself and my family is all I could hope for. Before I had to rely on others, now I can look after myself and my family.”
That’s the sort of difference your donation to Visionwest can make to a young family.
*Meeting the needs of people who come to Visionwest for help with compassion, dignity, and manaakitanga is our top priority so, while Matt’s story is real, we’ve changed his name and photo to protect his privacy.
We understand it is a great privilege when someone shares the story of their personal journey with us, so always seek their permission before sharing their story with others.
Click here to find out more about Youth Solutions, Visionwest’s youth training and employment programmes.