Abida is a year into her journey at The Access Project, and what a year it’s been! Abida has been through a lot since she joined but thanks to our work is now more positive about her future. This is her story…

“My name is Abida, and I am 15 years old, and have just reached the end of Year 10 at Wood Green Academy.

My journey on The Access Project began at the start of this year and it has massively contributed to my life. I had always hoped to secure a place on their life changing programme because I really wanted to get the support and tuition in subjects that I struggled with the most and felt that when I sat my GCSEs, I wouldn’t get a good grade in. The moment I found out about the programme I applied instantly as I knew they would help me achieve. I started to have more faith that I would get excellent grades and a great job in the future too with their help.

At the start of the pandemic, I didn’t think it was going to affect my education as everything at school was still normal to me. But some weeks later I saw COVID-19 not only negatively impacting my education but also my mental health. I began overthinking more and worrying that my GCSE grades would be badly impacted by the pandemic. My motivation was low, I lacked concentration and I worried I would always feel like this.

But this is why having The Access Project has been so positive because of the endless support the staff have given me during the pandemic. The variety of opportunities they offer from 1:1 sessions with my University Access Officer to the tutorials have really helped. Having those one-to-one sessions allowed me to express my emotions to someone I knew would listen and give me the best advice they could. The tutorials allowed me to catch up on the important work and teaching that I missed out on. My tutor was doing everything they could to meet my needs and focus on the areas I needed more support on.

When I start to think about my future, I would say to me it still feels a long time away. However, I know that these remaining years will fly by. If it wasn’t for The Access Project I would have no clue about universities, what life could be like there and where the top universities across the country are. Now when I think about my education, I hope I can get a Grade 6 or higher in all my subjects at GCSE’s and they have shown me that this is possible.”

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