My start in life wasn't a very easy one.
I was born prematurely with a complex blood disorder and placed into foster care. The treatment I received for my condition meant that I had to travel a lot and also ruled out the possibility of medicating my ADHD.
As a result of all this, my time at school was really hard. I was disruptive, had low confidence and felt completely isolated from my classmates. Because I felt so low all the time, I'd fight with people and didn't respect school or anyone there. I couldn't make any friends and that felt really bad.
My mum and teachers tried everything to improve my situation. I took part on loads of intervention programmes aimed at re-engaging me with education but nothing worked. I even moved schools. I felt hopeless and eventually started refusing to go to school at all. That was when my mum contacted The Prince's Trust xl programme asking for help. I knew I was facing a crossroads and this could be my final opportunity at creating a better life.
Although I felt nervous, I agreed to go along and check it out. I was so surprised, the relaxed environment made me feel more at ease straight away. The staff and other young people on the programme made me feel like I was part of a team and that felt great. We started learning about things that were important to me like how to manage our emotions and work with others.
I surprised myself massively and really got involved with lifestyle modules like how to be healthy and looking after your finances. My attitude did a complete 180. Earning my xl award and first ever academic qualification was awesome; I was so proud. It's a feeling I'll never forget.
The Prince's Trust xl programme was the boost I needed to get my life back on track. Now I've got a firm grip on my education and I'm feeling all the benefits that go with it. My outlook on life has completely changed and in my final GCSE year, my attendance rose to 95 per cent. I had come a long way.
Recently I was diagnosed with autism and supported my mum as she received treatment for breast cancer. A few years ago I might have been too overwhelmed by this to cope but with help from The Trust, now I know I can do anything. I've also started at a working college which I love, and even attended a local job fair.
It's amazing feeling to know I've got a bright future in front of me at last.
The Prince's Trust and Samsung Celebrate Success Awards were held on Monday at the London Palladium. The Huffington Post supported the Novae Educational Achiever of the Year Award. Find out more here.Suggest a correction