Shantay, you stay (in school!)
14-year-old Dean is a very creative child. He really enjoys drawing, and he loves to use his face as a canvas. “I first discovered my love for make-up a few years ago,” he told us. “It’s only recently that I discovered my love for drag.”
Working to get Dean back in school, ready to learn
When School-Home Support first met Dean he was having a tough time at school. “I felt anxious going to school,” he explains, “and my behaviour was getting worse too.” When Dean was first introduced to his SHS Practitioner, Emily, he was struggling to manage a full week without being excluded, and as a result, his attendance was dropping.
Emily took the time to establish a good working relationship with Dean, ensuring that he trusted her as someone to support him. The more she got to know Dean, the more she began to see that some of his more volatile behaviour was in relation to his mental health. She advocated for him at school and worked with Dean to find ways to calm things down and recognise certain triggers.
“I feel like my behaviour has improved since working with Emily,” Dean said. “I’m more focused now.” The great news was that Dean didn’t have a single exclusion in the autumn term – something he and his Mum are very proud of.
“I feel less lost in myself”
Recently Dean has discovered his love of drag. He really looks up to RuPaul’s Drag Race winner Bianca Del Rio – who he describes as “really funny”. Dean’s drag person, Kerstin, has also been helping him with his self-esteem. “When I am in drag, I feel confident,” Dean stated. “I feel less lost in myself… I feel pretty and sassy.”
His Mum is so proud of her son’s progress recently. “Emily has been a fantastic support for us as a family,” she said. His Mum is also ecstatic about her son’s blossoming drag career: “I think it’s absolutely amazing when my son is in drag. It brings out his self-esteem and confidence. And he looks beautiful!”
How can you help?
Dean is one of many children we’ve been able to help. Demand for our support has never been more needed due to the COVID-19 pandemic making life incredibly difficult for so many. If you want to help us, you can donate today and help us continue to be there for the vulnerable children and families we support on a daily basis.