Case studies

We love it when we hear stories from young people and the partners that we work with about the difference that N-Gage is making.  We hope the case studies and feedback below will inspire you to join our team or access our services in the future.


James’s* Story

When we first met James he was a very angry young man, and had been causing trouble at his local Community Centre including locking staff inside the building, ruining the minibus when being transported to events and being banned from the sessions being run there. When we first met him on the bus we saw him regularly and on a couple of occasions he got into fights that N-Gage members of staff had to step in, mediate and resolve.

Over the past 18 months we have seen a great change in James, in both his behaviour and attitude towards life and towards members of staff. We were able to build a good relationship with him and his behaviour on the bus improved significantly.  He helped staff discipline other young people through peer discipline and we saw acts of kindness from him when he bought staff members and other young people drinks or food from the local shops.

Whilst still at school he was involved in a brick laying programme which he seemed to enjoy and since leaving school he has managed to get himself on a cheffing apprenticeship in a local hotel kitchen which he is really enjoying and is very passionate about. He loves talking to members of staff about his work and was disappointed when work told him he had to have time off due to a viral infection.

James had some problems at home working as a young carer for both parents; he coped with this very well and would occasionally talk to staff about this. When his mum died in December 2012 we were concerned as to how this would affect his behaviour and if he would regress back to his previous patterns of negative behaviour, however this did not happen. He has continued well with his apprenticeship, and we have been able to take him with a group of other young people out for a reward trip to Pizza Hut for their participation in a Young Leaders’ Forum. He also helped to fix the lock on the cupboards in the youth bus following them being broken off by a different group of young people. This involved him going and borrowing tools from his uncle’s house, fixing the lock and then returning everything within the space of the session.

The change in this young man has been astounding, and he has gone from being a person with little or no aspirations for his future, being involved in fights and crime to being someone who is making the most of the opportunities presented to him, respecting people who are trying to help, and making a positive contribution to his own community and society as a whole.

*Name of the young person has been changed for their own privacy.

Andrew’s* Story

When we first met Andrew in February 2012, he was a very hyperactive young man who was being educated in alternative provision and had no idea what he wanted to do with his future. He had begun hanging around in a group of young people involved in criminal activity and had started to become involved in anti-social behaviour himself. Over the past 15 months staff have been able to build a strong relationship with this individual. He has taken part in two community action projects cleaning up his local area. He has also been on two reward trips with N-Gage where his behaviour was outstanding. He has developed a great respect for N-Gage members of staff and regularly pulls up his peers on their behaviour if he feels it is inappropriate.

His own behaviour has improved massively and he has become a lot more focussed, taking a lead on the Young Leaders’ Forum that has recently been established. He has also been coming up with ideas for him and some of the other young people to take part in fundraising events to raise money for the work of N-Gage so that we could continue to engage with them in the same way.

Following one trip that Andrew came on he decided that he would like to become a youth worker when he is older and has taken steps to arrange a work experience placement at N-Gage. He is a pleasure to work with, and his passion that has developed has been amazing to witness.

*Name of the young person has been changed for their own privacy.

Reference from Inspector Debbie Weake, Wythenshawe Neighbourhood Policing Team

I am one of the Neighbourhood Inspectors at Wythenshawe. Part of my role involves the policing of anti social behaviour, which we manage by using a combination of support and enforcement interventions.

N-Gage has worked with the police at Wythenshawe by utilising the youth bus as a means to establish contacts with young people in our problem areas. This has been particularly successful on the Royal Oak Estate in Baguley, a problematic estate for anti social behaviour. N-Gage has managed to establish a relationship of trust with this group of perpetrators, which they have used as a basis to work through a programme with the youths to establish more responsible attitudes towards the local community and shopkeepers. This has led to notable reductions in complaints of anti social behaviour from shopkeepers and residents on the estate. I am keen to support N-Gage to carry on this work in the neighbourhood, in conjunction with the local policing team, as they offer us a support element to our strategy which otherwise would not be possible.

Quote from Paul Goggins MP after visiting a Catalyst detached session

“I enjoyed the visit and was very impressed by the way the staff engaged with the young people. The facilities on the bus give the young people something enjoyable and constructive to do; it was also encouraging to hear about their involvement in the other programmes and courses that are available.”

Reference from Geoff George, Alternative Provision Co-ordinator at Abraham Moss High School

I confirm that I have dealt with N-Gage since 2005 in my role as Alternative Provision Co-ordinator, during which time they have provided Abraham Moss with excellent support with our students. N-Gage have been able to build positive working relationships with students who have given up or who are refusing to participate in mainstream education. I have found the working ethos behind N-Gage to be creative and placing the young person at the centre of their delivery. Their work has been a major factor in our school’s success, helping us to get students who have given up on education back on track and to focus on their chosen educational pathway pre & post-16. Abraham Moss High School and N-Gage have worked together for a number of years successfully re-integrating students back into the classroom, in order to offer the best quality support programmes to our students, N-Gage must be as flexible and as individual as possible.  They have, therefore, devised programmes that will aim at working on specific issues, without imposing unreasonable expectations.

Their aim is to motivate young people to achieve improved levels of self-esteem, qualifications and social development in a safe and productive environment. Their primary focus is to teach vital listening, communication, teamwork and self discipline skills addressing many of the root issues resulting in poor behavior, non attendance or disengagement. At all times I have found N-Gage staff to be professional, skilled personnel, hard working, reliable and focused.

I can confidently recommend N-Gage as a professional and reliable educational setting, and a placement that enhances students emotional and economic well being.