Fabio & Neil’s Story – Working Towards A Better Future


Every MCR young person is bursting with talent and there’s no limit to where their abilities can take them. However, sometimes they need to be nudged in the right direction to be their best. That’s where mentors come in. We spoke to Neil and Fabio about their relationship and the impact it had on Fabio’s time in school and beyond.

When Fabio was in school, he often felt lost. Though bright and ambitious, he struggled with putting his dreams into action. He told us that Neil helped change that.

“With Neil’s influence, I think the first change I noticed in myself is confidence in my ability, because I always heard the same thing over and over “you can do this or that,” but it just kind of sounded like a token gesture. But with Neil, you put into perspective that, okay, you can do this or why not just do these things this way and you can make it easier for yourself. I think self-worth is really important to me because I kind of just like coasted by most of the time because I didn’t feel like I could do things. But with Neil, I just felt, like, more assertive when I was doing things I wasn’t just, I felt like I was doing things with a purpose rather than just aimlessly.”

After getting to know Fabio, Neil knew that he had plenty of potential, but just had to realise that he was actually capable of whatever he sets his mind to:

“I always felt he definitely had the potential; he’s bright and he’s intelligent. It’s the question of sometimes just telling him that – that you can do it.”

Fabio and Neil’s relationship grew and grew over the time they spent meeting. Even after Fabio left school in 2019, the pair have continued to build on their relationship and have remained friends who are often in contact.

Both have had a great experience of mentoring and encourage anyone who’s interested to get involved.

Fabio says:

“If you’re on the fence about becoming a mentor, don’t worry too much about it. If you feel like it’s a bit of a daunting experience, I think it’s gonna be the same for the mentee. I think it’s just building that rapport, just being there for them, you don’t really need to come in with a motivational speech or anything. Just being there for someone and wanting the best for them is all you could ever ask for.”

Neil says:

“If somebody is thinking about mentoring and they’re not sure, I’d say don’t get hung up on the word mentoring or being a mentor. Some people think that’s a skill, it’s not, all you have to do is build a relationship, have a conversation, and that’s really what mentoring is. I think some people are scared of the word mentoring, listening and having a conversation is actually what mentoring is.”

Thanks to both Fabio and Neil for sharing their experiences of mentoring and for being filmed, too.

If you’ve been inspired by the pair’s words and wish to get involved, you can #BeTheBridge between a young person’s talent and possibilities. Sign up and become a mentor today!

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