Meet Bobo, our new bakery peer mentor. He helps show new trainees the ropes.
He has come a long way in a short time. Six months ago, he was homeless. He has since thankfully found somewhere safe to stay, but that was just the start of his journey towards the life he wants.
Despite being off the streets, Bobo was still unhappy. Lonely and bored he spent most of his time in his room.
“I didn’t go out at all”.
That was when he found out about Providence Row (and Rise Bakery) and met with Asia from the Enterprise & Training team to talk about how to get back on his feet.
He registered for the charity’s Bakery Trainee Scheme. Despite having “never made cake before in life,” Bobo quickly picked up baking skills and with it, his well-being and happiness improved.
“I was happy, I told my children, ‘I’m going to make cake’”.
He says that the scheme is “putting me back to normal, where I was supposed to be, because I was also drinking a lot before and now they say, two weeks, three weeks without drinking, and now I’m feeling better. Mentally, physically, I’m okay. I’ve got something every Wednesday, Friday, I have to go do something, something that I like.”
Bobo didn’t stop there! Not only has he completed his Level 2 Food Hygiene accreditation, he’s also taken part in IT classes, Job Club, and recently started the Gardening Trainee Scheme.
With past experience in security, Bobo is eager to get his badge back and return to work. He is seeing Annette, our employability coordinator for one-to-one support to achieve this.
“That’s why I like this place, they get me a lot of help and I know I’ll get back to my work, my security work, or other jobs.”
His love for the kitchen has led him to become a bakery peer mentor supporting and helping new trainees in the kitchen.
Bobo has found that the activities at Providence Row have helped support his well-being as well as develop practical and transferable skills. He is happy and excited about the future.
When asked about Providence Row, Bobo said:
“My advice would be to join this place. Because they really help you a lot.”