Peter is a troubled 12-year-old boy who has lived in residential care for the past 4 years, where most of the other children are boys aged 4 to 11.

As he is frequently excluded from school due to violent and antisocial behaviour, Peter has virtually no opportunity to interact with other boys and girls around his own age. It was a school music specialist who referred Peter to Tinderbox and encouraged him to go along.

As Peter has become more engaged in the Hub activities over time, his confidence has grown hugely. He has enthusiastically participated in the song-writing group and he has performed at local concerts. In fact, Peter’s behaviour and attitude have been so positive that he is now a ‘Tinderbox Champion’. This group of young people work together to support other young participants and the management team values their input in the running of the Hub. As a ‘Tinderbox Champion’, Peter continues to embrace every opportunity offered to him, whether it’s sharing his vocal talents as a singer through performances or attending arts and culture events.

Key to the success of Peter’s experience at Tinderbox is that he is accepted at face value, as virtually no-one knows his background or life circumstances. This means Peter is treated like any other young person, and this encourages him to participate fully and engage with his peers.

His care team tell us that Tinderbox is the only positive thing that Peter is involved in and has given him loads of confidence and friendship experiences he hasn’t found anywhere else; the effect of this on his wellbeing is massive.

Further opportunities through Tinderbox lie ahead for Peter and the hope is that the project can continue to help him with the many challenging transitions that inevitably await him on his journey through the care system into adulthood.

“Tinderbox is the best thing in my life”


“Peter’s story shows that our grants can have a real impact on a young person’s life. It’s particularly rewarding to see that the support he received has enabled him to go on to play a meaningful role in developing other children’s interest in music.”

Chris, Trustee