Frankie is now living in a very pretty garden setting; she has her own one bedroomed flat where she has support when needed. Frankie is very independent and even when at the Orpheus she structured her own time to include the gym to keep her moving and often took herself off shopping and to church just booking her own transport.

Frankie attended Orpheus for three years, at first she lived in supported housing outside the Orpheus Centre and attended as a day student. Fairly early on she realised how much time was wasted in travel and she applied for a flat on site where she soon moved in and became very much a part of the Orpheus community. After excelling in most subjects especially art and successfully selling some of her work and getting commissions in her last year, she had a three day internship with Limpsfield Infant school working in the classroom with the early years students. This put her in good stead for her career choice when she moved on last July, into the community and the world of work.

Whilst at Orpheus Frankie most enjoyed all the other students around her and how good it was to live and work together. She was a true leader of the team and enjoyed getting everyone to participate in everything going on. She loved doing costumes with her imagination and creative arty streak she was an act to follow.

She commented “it is a very welcome place – a supported environment but with my own age group. Orpheus get the balance right and there is always someone to talk to – and my intern placement was great.”

“I developed my personal skills and looking after myself independently and becoming a better person with understanding of others in the work place. Orpheus gave me a freedom to explore myself so I was able to find out where I was going.”

Special memories “have to be going to see the Foo Fighters with my friend Tyler. The guy that ran it gave us lunch out and made it such a great day. It’s one big extended family. I’ve kept in contact with my friends and other students ask how I am and we all check up on everyone else. We just had so much fun just playing games together and when my boyfriend stayed they made him feel very welcome too.”

“I have gone to college to get qualifications to work with young children especially young disabled children. And I live in my own flat with little support.”

Frankie has since enrolled at East Surrey College and is doing the Early Years Practitioners Diploma Level 2 with two days out a week working in a local nursery with children and babies. Her future aspirations are to continue to work with able and disabled children. When asked about the Orpheus she said;

Until you spend the day there, you don’t realise what a wonderful place it is. It was a time to find out who I was and what I wanted to be”