Amy beat hundreds of other entries to reach the final three in the HSBC Breakthrough Award and said, “When I found out I was a nominee, I was overjoyed! It was unreal to think that I achieved so much that I was a finalist for such an amazing award! It is all thanks to The Prince’s Trust. I am so happy now.”

Amy Wilson, a former student at VTCT approved centre Beauty Therapy Academy in Glasgow, overcame great adversity to be nominated for The Prince’s Trust Celebrate Success Awards in November.

The awards, recognise the achievements of disadvantaged young people who have succeeded against the odds, improved their chances in life and had a positive impact on their local community.

Since experiencing three separate assaults on the bus home from school, Amy only left the house for therapy appointments and she slept for up to 20 hours a day just to escape the constant anxiety she felt. Amy, 17, was forced to leave school two years earlier. The thought of even doing the weekly shop with her mum filled her with fear and a good day for her was being able to focus on something for 30 minutes which usually proved impossible. “I was sad and exhausted every minute that I was awake,” she said. “I had no motivation for anything.” Then a careers adviser told her about The Trust’s Get into Beauty programme, a course delivered in partnership with Beauty Therapy Academy, which helps unemployed young people find a job in the industry. At first, Amy was intimidated by the thought of being on a course with 11 other girls but quickly her warm, bright personality and passion for what she was doing shone through. As her enthusiasm, motivation and confidence surged, she developed a drive and professionalism that made her stand out, along with her kind spirit in helping her classmates. By the end of the course, Amy had stopped relying on her mum to accompany her everywhere and was now taking the bus by herself, a remarkable breakthrough. Then during a press interview, she bravely told her personal story.

Lynne Hetherington, Beauty Therapy Academy Manager, said, “At the beginning of the course Amy seemed a little shy and reserved but grew with confidence and passion each day. I was extremely proud of her especially at the end of the course when she got accepted into a full time beauty course.” Amy moved on to study beauty at college and started applying for part-time jobs. She plans to eventually have her own beauty salons, run her own cosmetics line and help other young people. “The Prince’s Trust never gave up on me, even when I was having a bad day,” she said. “That has helped me more than anything else I’ve tried."

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