A Chorley teenager has been recognised by the Prince's Trust after overcoming a difficult start to his life. Jack Lucas, 19, has won the North West Breakthrough award.
By his own admission, Jack went off the rails but credits the Prince's Trust Team Programme, managed by Groundwork, with helping him to turn his life around.
The awards recognise young people who have overcome barriers and developed new skills. Here's Jack's story in his own words:
"After having problems in my life, I went off the rails. I got into fights, left home, and sofa-surfed whenever I could. When I couldn't, I slept in the park. Sleeping out in a place like that in the winter, it really affects you.
Dad heard about the Team Programme on the radio and said I should go. I needed something positive to focus on, and that's exactly what Team is.
I have so many memories from that programme. Even when my mental health declined when I was meant to be on a work placement, The Prince's Trust helped me through it and made sure I got another chance.
They even gave me a Development Award when I couldn't pay for transport to get to my apprenticeship interview. The Prince's Trust put their neck out for me, and made me believe in myself, and now it's like I've come full circle because I'm a live-in apprentice at the activity centre, making my life a success by helping others."
Determined to make the most of that second chance, Jack worked hard to impress and landed an interview at the end for an activity instruction apprenticeship. He used Prince's Trust Development Award funding that removes the financial barriers that often prevent young people from accessing work, employment or training to pay for transport to and from the interview, and the rest is history.