B.L. attended the New Shoots programme in 2019. 

Before I came to the farm I was always at home and completely isolated socially from society. I was recovering from a breakdown following university and struggling to rejoin society because of my Autism.

During my time on New Shoots programme I met the animals, I worked in a group setting building an enclosure for the animals, and engaged in socialisation. I enjoyed the creative process of our group project of building an enclosure, as well as the group activities we did.

I would recommend the program to anyone, it was a lifesaver for me.

It was incredibly useful getting used to traveling again and being in a supportive work environment for extended hours.

I learnt to be comfortable socialising again and knowing what my limits are.

I learnt how to put together a professional CV and I discovered that I am very good at portraying myself well in interviews, which I didn't know before.

New Shoots helped me became socially integrated within society again and know how to set my goals for the future.

Following the programme, I was able to start voluntary work within a school, as well as start volunteering on the Educational program at Vauxhall City Farm. I was able to keep building up my confidence and skills and focus on what necessary steps I needed to take for my career. I used the skills I leant to perfect my CV and send it out to a relevant work agency and used certain techniques I had learnt, when attending interviews for jobs.

Now I am working full time in a primary school in Streatham as a TA and will be starting a PGCE in Primary Education in September 2020.

Vauxhall City Farm's New Shoots program allowed me to get comfortable in a professional environment in a short amount of time. This is due to the staff being so supportive, caring and understanding to members of New Shoots.

I would recommend the program to anyone, it was a lifesaver for me.

Support us now so we can work with more people like B.L. in the future!