I don't know what I would do without this place (school) because it's my home

Stephanie, who is 16, lost her mother to cancer when she was 11.  She has never known her father, and went to live with her sister who had three young children of her own.  The family were living in relative poverty.  

I have benefitted in many ways from boarding.  Life was tough at home because often we didnt have money for all of use to eat and my sister would often go without so I was able to.  But when I am here, I know i can eat meals, without feeling guilty and when there are troubles at home I dont worry as much. 

The opportunities I have been given are incredible.  In junior school I went on a rock climbing wall for the first time and faced my fear of heights, with the support of my friends.  I faced a fear of water by doing kayaking in the swimming pool.  There have been many types of clubs that I have involved myself in and one of my favorite things here is the house spirit. 

At home I never really felt included in much and generally left out, but having one big family of older and younger girls alike in my house has been something I will never forget.  Lathering pink paint on each other's faces and scoffing pizza before try to scrape the paint off our faces has been a highlight and I have fond memories on the girls.

Not only that, but here I have felt genuine care towards me.  My self-confidence was low.  I wasn't used to hugs and people smiling at me.  Although it may not seem like much but the care and understanding has meant the world to me and got me into a happier place.

Contact [email protected].  As a Reedham Guardian, you will kept up to date with children like Stephanie's progress and have access to her story and successes.