I was originally referred to Mustard Tree by Back on Track, learning centre where I gained experiences in basic skills and cooking. The Freedom Project was something for me to do; to get me out of the house and to get some further experience after a long time out of work.

The support I received from the project gave me confidence to step out of my comfort zone and push my boundaries. I gained the self-belief to look for work and to change me attitude from being someone negative to someone positive. At Mustard Tree I graduated from the 20 week Freedom Project and stayed on to become a team leader on the shop floor. I kept on taking steps forward towards my goal of getting a job…

…and I did it! I’m now working on the trains with TransPennine Express as an on-board host. This involves greeting customers, serving hot drinks and refreshments and travelling across the North West. I’m using all the customer service skills I learned at Mustard Tree; getting on with people, being eager to learn, smiling and providing a great service.

Mustard Tree helped me to bring about this real, positive change. I have a much closer relationship with my mother now, before she was very frustrated with me! I’m now more responsible, I’m able to respect myself and others, and to keep focused on the goals I want to achieve in life.

My main goals now are to save money for my own flat, take my driving test and to settle down. Now that I’m working, I’m able to achieve real independence. Before, I thought I would never be working. Now I’m enjoying my work, getting on well with my colleagues, and I plan to work on the trains until I retire!

If it wasn’t for Mustard Tree, I really don’t know what I’d be doing now.

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