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Case Studies

Ben’s Story Student with severe anxiety Comments from Ben’s mum

When Ben started on the Nisai Mentoring programme he was in a very low mood, he never left the family home, he spent 99% of his time sitting in his bedroom. He had no sense of worth, no confidence, drive or motivation. He couldn’t have a conversation with anyone outside of the family and needed his parents to talk for him. He didn’t engage in anything as he felt that there was just no point to it. He continued to have a very low opinion of himself, he was a keen artist but felt his work was very poor. He struggled a lot with his memory and couldn’t remember things that were said to him only moments earlier.

Nisai worked hard to find a Mentor that Ben might be able to relate to and use his keen interest in art as the main focus. Ben met his Mentor with support from his family, at first he was very unsure and struggled to look up or talk but when Kelly his now Mentor started talking about her interest in art and how she has been involved in the art world for a number of years his head lifted, he was interested. She started talking about some of Bens drawings he has done that she had copies of. For the first time, he started talking to someone outside of the family, this was truly amazing to see. He looked visually happy for the first time in such a long time. They spent a short time talking about his art and what he likes drawing.

It was decided that he would start slowly with her meeting twice a week for just an hour or for as long as Ben could manage. The first session came, and it was a struggle to get him out of his bedroom, but he did it and Kelly took things very slowly.

Over the next few weeks, he continued to see Kelly twice a week and it was great to see how his mood had lifted. Over the coming months of slow progress, he started to talk more and more and not only about art about his couple of friends and other interests he had.

Kelly had a very good sense of when Ben was able to talk when he needed to end the session, and the mood he was generally feeling. They set about doing lots of talking around his art and other interests, he would show her drawings that he had done that week and sit at the computer showing her the programs he used to create things.

You could visibly see his confidence growing as each session passed, he talked more, he showed more of his own work and wanted to share his interests with Kelly.

As his parents we could see him changing over the months, at first, it was a real struggle to get him to come downstairs and often he would only go as far as sitting on the stairs for ten mins. However now he now gets himself up and ready before she arrives and dressed rather than him being still in his nightwear. He often has projects ready to show her. He looks forward to each session and has also asked to increase his time spent with Kelly. He now remembers what days she is coming and what times he has with her. Which is huge progress!

Ben has been able to talk to Kelly about other problems he has, his Insomnia, Autism, memory, feelings to name a few.

The progress he has made with Nisai Mentoring is just astonishing, he will leave the house with his mentor, go into a coffee shop and have a drink, go on walks to talk about his art and other things. Undertake projects and work together with his mentor on these. He asks for help with his projects and truly enjoys talking things through.

From the outside it may not seem like much progress has been made but for us to see our son growing so much, having the confidence to share his work with others, wanting to engage with someone by himself rather than always needing a family member with him. Having the motivation to get himself up every session and be in a position to start working on a project or go out of the house. He still thinks low of himself but now takes on board other opinions and accepts them. He is happy to hear what others think.

Progress for Ben has been very personalised, and we feel that without the mentoring program he would never have been able to achieve what he has. There is still a very long way to go for him but we now have the feeling that he is growing each week, getting stronger awareness of the outside world. And the greatest thing for us is that he believes that he is no longer worthless he has a point to his days and can see a future.

We can not that the Mentoring program enough, at the beginning we had little hope that our son would ever be able to do the things he does now but now we have an amazing feeling of what he has achieved and what he could go on to achieve.

Thank you!

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