Eleanor* has been homeless since she was 16 and suffers from severe anxiety.
She bounced between jobs, living with boyfriends or on friends’ sofas. Some of her partners were abusive, which made her anxiety worse. Her confidence got so low, she couldn’t go outside.
When she was given a place in a young persons’ scheme which we support, she finally felt at home. She asked support staff if she could adopt a special pet, a bearded dragon named Zelda.
Zelda sparked an interest in Eleanor, whom we funded to enrol on an on line course in herpetology, the study of reptiles. She is also getting practical experience by working part time at a pet shop.
Eleanor says that not only has studying helped her discover more about her pet, but another side of herself. She has new confidence about living an independent life.
“I’ve got more opportunities. I’ve learned about caring for Zelda’s health, as well as my own.”