YOUNG, homeless and out of work, the future looked bleak for Dan Seear.
But the 23-year-old has managed to turn his life around with the help of the YMCA and is now set to launch his own business.
At 22 Dan had a regular income and a place to live, but after being told he could no longer lodge with a friend he found himself with nowhere to stay and out of a job.
From knowing people who had lived at the YMCA in the past, he decided to turn to the charity for help and began living at Gordon Anstis House.
“The staff were so friendly and really supportive,” he said.
“There were so many services on offer and the support you could get was second-to-none.
“There is a stigma associated with the YMCA because of ex-criminals and people think you don’t want to work, and I remember being a bit worried at first. But then you realise that there’s a lot of people like you and people want to turn their life around.
“The stigma is unjust and it’s unfair. The YMCA gave me a chance, and that’s what people need to do for them. The work they do is incredible.”
Once there, instead of giving up and becoming frustrated, Dan channelled himself into getting extra qualifications to improve his job prospects with the help of staff and volunteers.
Using both his passion for motorcycles and his mechanical qualifications, he enrolled on a Prince’s Trust course for three months where he built up the skills and confidence to go about setting up his own business.
Dubbed by Dan as the ‘RAC for motorcyclists’, he wants to set up as a mobile motorbike mechanic.
And he is now drumming up support to make his dream become a reality, including speaking about his story so far at a recent conference with top industry delegates such as the head of O2.
Visit www.ymcaworcestershire.com for more information about the work they do.