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Nicole Cobb

Safe Guarding Lead

5 bits of advice to my teenage self…

  • This is temporary

  • Your teen years aren't always the best years they are claimed to be and, if these don't feel like the best then I bet the best is yet to come

  • Grown-ups aren't always right

  • For every time you mess up there's 10 opportunities to fix it if you'll work hard enough

  • I am the one thing in life I can control

About me

As a teenager…

I grew up in a deprived part of Aberdeen called Northfield and I grew up with 2 sister who I cared for often when my mum wasn’t around.
As a teenager I was always in trouble and teachers didn’t hold out much hope for me and had me written off (although there was a small handful that would make my week better and definitely made me feel seen). Most of my best memories come from accessing the Community Centre youth activities and other youth services in the area. I can say I am where I am today because of some very patient youth workers who, at the time, probably didn’t realise the influence they’d have. They let me explore my non-academic talents and helped me realise there was more to my ability than maths and English results. From that I enjoyed nights DJing under 18 events and taking pictures down the skate park.
Not coming from much we definitely appreciated friendships and the relationships we made and I had some pretty cool friends who got me through my teen years.

After school…

I left school with no academic achievements and with a baby at 17. I left school at 15 and soon after left my mum’s house at 15. That unfortunately led me on to be street homeless at 16 and I spent some cold nights finding somewhere safe to sleep ( I promise this story gets better). I experienced a very volatile relationship that left me vulnerable. That all changed when I had my daughter and decided I wanted a better life for her than what I had. I enrolled into college to study nursing (it took 3 years of applying and finally convincing someone to give me a chance). I studied nursing for 2 years while juggling a 3 day a week job at HMV, being a single mum and volunteering for a children’s charity. I done what I needed to make up for lost time and knew I needed to work hard to prove myself. I then went on to study Social Sciences for another year at college and then moved to England to go to university – something my teachers told me I’d never achieve. I graduated in 2016 as Graduate of the Year.

Now I’m…

At 32 years old I now have 2 children, have married my partner of 10 years, learnt to drive and bought our first home in Lancaster where I live now (told you it got better). I now have a job in Lancashire County Council managing the Youth Services in Lancaster and hopefully being the Youth Worker to other young people that I needed when I was younger. I’m studying my 2nd degree and filling any spare time doing things I love; cycling, walking, drumming and paddle boarding.