Amani came to Jamie’s Farm with her school as she was struggling with her behaviour.
“I had become chaotic and quite disruptive in class – I was talking, throwing things – I was very disengaged. My attitude to everything was ‘I don’t care, that doesn’t matter’. My school knew I was good at practical work and
thought I could apply that to the farm.”
Amani was initially apprehensive, but keen to give it a try and see the animals.
“When I arrived, I was pretty nervous but the second the farm’s dog came up to me, I came out of my shell. The farm brought confidence out of me that I never really had. I had always put on the facade of a naughty kid, but I was actually a quiet kid that didn’t want to open up.”
One of the biggest changes Amani has noticed in herself is the improvement in her work ethic and ability to self-regulate her emotions. “At school I had a quick fuse, so I would get frustrated really quickly at my work and if I didn’t get something right. But it was different at the farm. After we had mucked out and fed the animals, I would stand back and think ‘I’m proud of that’.
When I went back to school, I had a lot more patience. I was calmer in the classroom; I was able to sit down and focus on my work so it was the best standard I could do.” Looking ahead, Amani hopes to be a footballer, and that the patience and teamwork she learned at the farm will help her build stronger relationships on and off the pitch. “I’ve started coaching the local under 9s team, which is something I wouldn’t have said yes to before Jamie’s Farm.”