Billy is thirteen and has not had the greatest start in life. From an early age there have been prolonged issues at home that has impacted on Billy and affected his behaviour and relationships with his peer group and at school.

Billy started to display the classic signs of low self-esteem in a young person. As Billy started to behave in a negative way, his teachers were getting worried about him. He refused to engage with them and this was having a bad effect on his education.

Billy disengaged from his education and eventually became a target for bullies at school. After a short time he began to react to this and developed a cycle of aggressive behaviours that would have seen him excluded if it continued.

In an attempt to get Billy back into mainstream education, his school referred him to White Gold Cornwall (WGC) for ‘one to one’ mentoring and a tailor-made programme was put together by the caseworker after an initial assessment.

Billy responded well and soon struck up a very good relationship with his caseworker. The focus for Billy was to show him the positive things in his life and help him understand the impact of his behaviour and also to help him develop his future potential.

During the process it was discovered that Billy had a Grandfather who gave him inspiration and was a person that he really respected and could relate to. Granddad was a well-respected figure in his community and was keen to help young Billy sort himself out.

The WGC caseworker used the help of Billy’s grandfather to get him back on track and change the way he was behaving. Granddad showed Billy many things and even simple stuff like how to chop the firewood that Billy enjoyed. Getting granddad to be part of the programme was very successful for Billy and good progress was being made.

Sadly for all concerned Billy’s granddad passed away during the programme and although this hit Billy very hard, to his credit he continued with the programme and finally started to ‘turn the corner’.

At this sad time, Billy wanted to remember his granddad and with the help of his caseworker he composed a poem that he read out at the grandfathers funeral in front of other family members, something that he would never have done previously.