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Breaking Barriers - Zack's story

Breaking Barriers

Breaking Barriers is an early intervention service providing support for children and young people affected by the imprisonment of a close family member.  It offers tailored one-to one support to reduce anxiety around prison, emotional wellbeing and assist with engagement at school.

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Zack’s story

A year ago, my father was sent to prison and I haven’t seen him since. This has taken its toll on both me and my three sisters at home and school. As a result, my mum is struggling to cope with our behaviour, and I am always getting in trouble at school.

My oldest sister, Kiera who is two years older than me, just started her GCSE’s and the teachers at school were worried that if her behaviour didn’t change, she would be expelled. To try and help us, the teachers at school referred us both to Ormiston Families’ Breaking Barriers service.

Upon referral to Breaking Barriers, they gave Kiera and myself eight weeks of one-to-one support. During these sessions, me and my sister had a safe space for us to talk and express ourselves. These sessions really helped us come to terms with our father being in prison.

Following the one-to-one sessions, I felt happier and I wasn’t getting into trouble at school anymore. Additionally, as Kiera became more confident, her grades at school started to improve. At home, mum is coping a lot better too. I really do owe this all to Breaking Barriers.

To find out more about Breaking Barriers, visit Breaking Barriers