From about the age of 12, Dean was introduced to drugs and alcohol and by the age of 15, smoking cannabis became his favourite pastime. He said that this helped him to forget his problems and worries. Cocaine, amphetamines and ecstasy soon followed and Dean said that he realises now that this was the beginning of his addiction.
After years of substance abuse and mental health issues, Dean first entered rehab at his partners’ insistence, as his addiction had spiralled out of control. Dean accessed treatment services with We Are With You and, having achieved abstinence, was referred to Double Impact where he enrolled as a student of the Lincolnshire Academy.
He started working towards his level 1 qualification in Progression and alongside this, he also commenced his Level 2 qualification in Mentoring. In his own words…
"The Academy has helped me to build my confidence and reduce my anxiety and depression to the point that it is almost non-existent. The encouragement from my peers and the staff at Double Impact has been invaluable. To work and learn in a non-judgemental environment is fantastic and they are always on hand to help and support with any issues. At the End of October, I had an interview with Marks and Spencer’s and been offered a job. Three years ago, I was using food banks and now I can shop at M&S for my Christmas dinner."