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Children involved with the Pillars mentoring programme often have a very positive experience, which undoubtedly raises their confidence and trust to grow up to be stronger, happier and healthier people.



A young girl aged 8 stopped attending school in the summer months. Both school and parent were unclear as to the reason.  The young girl did not give an explanation other than she just did not want to go.

The mentor as one of her goals with the young person taught her how to tie shoelaces.  This task had been overlooked within the family due to the high stress the family was under having a parent in prison.

The absences stopped immediately.  It turned out that the young girl was embarrassed about not being able to tie her shoelaces and wanted to avoid being teased about this (she had been taunted frequently about having a parent in prison).  During the summer months her class went swimming and she was put in the situation of having to tie her shoelaces when they got dressed to attend class after swimming and just didn’t want another hassle in her life. 
The mentor on collecting her 6-year-old young girl from her home discovered she was very quiet and sullen. As she had built up trust with the young girl she was able to discover that she had been physically abused and her life put in danger by her siblings. The mentor was gravely concerned about her welfare and contacted the Regional Coordinator who made a notification to Child Youth & Family with her caregiver being involved in the process.

A Child Youth & Family plan was put in place to ensure the safety and well being of the young girl, and PILLARS was able to put extra resources and support around the whole family. The young girl is now safely at home free from the physical abuse she had suffered.


A young boy of 14 years was a loner; he had low self-esteem and isolated himself and his interests from his peers and others. The mentor came along and spent time with this young man encouraging him with his projects and assisting him to look at ways to get them up and running.  

The mentor also introduced him to a variety of interests such as sailing, water skiing, tramping and building. The young boy’s self esteem has increased to the point where he is able to mix more easily, talk about and share his interests with his peers.  

A 5 year-old boy was very disrespectful when he talked about the police.  He expressed himself in a way that was incredibly anti-social, calling them “pigs” and saying he was going to get them one day.

The mentor took him for a tour around the police station.  He was able to dress up in a uniform (wear a police hat etc.) and use a walkie talkie. His whole attitude has changed and when asked what he would like to be when he grows up he says “a police officer”.