EZRA’S STORY

Through his Reboot West Coach building a trusting relationship and exploring values rather than goals, Ezra disclose more to his Coach, which ultimately led him to being in a much safer, happier position today.

Why did Ezra need support from 1625ip?

Ezra moved to Bristol in Sept 2019 from a children’s home environment into his first independent living arrangement. Ezra had lots of support from a professional network, but was only starting to develop the ability to form effective relationships with his workers. Ezra was only engaging with his support in a very transactional way, with meetings being minimal length and not very focused on the support.

How did 1625ip services help Ezra be more independent?

Regarding Ezra’s struggle with forming effective professional relationships, the Reboot Coach used an Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) informed, assertive approach to the engagement. The Coach was consistent in offering Ezra appointments, being open to helping him with travel and doing things like going out to eat together, enjoying and discussing music together, whilst keeping the conversation about education, employment and training open and alive without being pushy. This allowed Ezra time to develop trust with his Coach and to know that the opportunity to discuss his future plans was available to him when he was ready. By keeping the dialogue values-focused rather than goal-focused, the coach allowed Ezra to think about what he wanted for himself without the pressure of possible failure if he set unrealistic goals.

This gentle yet assertive approach to relationship building meant that Ezra disclosed to his Reboot Coach that he was dealing drugs and wanted to stop but did not feel able to do so. In receiving this disclosure, the Coach remained curious and non-judgemental, whilst also asserting the necessary boundaries to ensure Ezra understood the seriousness of his disclosure. Safety planning and accommodation became the priority for Ezra as he was alienated from his peer groups by his decision to stop dealing.

Overall, this was a critical turning point for Ezra. It ultimately led to him being in a much safer, happier position today. He can imagine a future for himself driven by his values rather than by survival and necessity.

During summer 2020, with lockdown measures eased and Ezra in a safer and more stable position, the Reboot Coach facilitated and meeting with a construction employment agency. They agreed that once Ezra had achieved his Construction Skills Certification Scheme (CSCS) card, they would have paid work ready for him. This interaction gave Ezra a considerable boost of motivation. The Reboot Coach then worked in conjunction with 1625’s Participation and Learning team to set up an in-house CSCS course delivered in conjunction with Weston College. Ezra attended this and engaged well. He is yet to attempt the exam due to lockdown.

Ezra demonstrated a lot of courage in making his original disclosure regarding his drug dealing. He knew that changing this part of his life would involve a lot of change and sacrifice. Ezra demonstrates willingness, flexibility, and a fantastic capacity to reflect on the changes he is making, and shape a vision of his future. He shows an ability to connect his present moment decisions to his values and future goals by not always taking the easy path to what he wants.

What difference did 1625ip make?

By being assertive, flexible and values (rather than goals) focused, the Coaches intervention allowed Ezra to build a trusting relationship that was there when he was ready to make the best use of it. This has helped shape Ezra’s ability to form effective relationships with other professionals. This relationship-building allowed Ezra to make his disclosure and change the trajectory of his life. The continued support that the Reboot Coach can offer – thanks to the long-term nature of the project – means that the intervention can continue to impact steering Ezra towards the future he wants. He has taken significant steps towards managing his independence and towards engaging in education, employment and training.