I am 44 and never went to school as I am from a Traveller background. I came into prison and wanted to learn to read while I’m inside, as I’ve never been able to read a book to my son. I spoke to IAG (information, Advice, and Guidance) and they asked a Shannon Trust mentor to help me.
I have been working with my mentor for a month now and have nearly finished two Turning Pages manuals, and I’m working through the activity book. I’ve learnt how to break down words into smaller parts and sound them out, and my mentor even said I was his favourite learner as he could see I really wanted to learn! He helped me get a pair of glasses so I could see the letters better too.
I want to say thank you to all of Shannon Trust – I never believed in my heart or mind that I would ever be able to read a word, and now I’m reading sentences! I’m now loving learning and finding it a big comfort while going through a difficult time inside.
I’m being released next week, and would like to get my CSCS card, and if I do that then I have a job lined up in a family business. I also want to do maths and English at college in the community as I’ve never achieved qualifications and now I feel I can. My mum told me how proud she was of me learning to read and it made me cry – it’s even helped repair our relationship and I can’t wait to show her my certificates.
I want to thank my mentor and all of the Shannon Trust staff, as without you, there wouldn’t be mentors to help people like me! I’m so grateful and wish I could thank every one of you.
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