A 27-year-old Northampton man who fought back from drug and alcohol issues has been nominated in the Prince’s Trust awards
Inspirational Steven Carrutthers, 27 of Northampton, faced a difficult childhood and was placed in care from an early age.
He battled problems with drugs and alcohol which led to depression, problems with the police and attempts to take his own life.
Fast forward to today and Steven has turned his life around to represent Northampton in a prestigious royal awards ceremony next month.
Steven’s incredible achievements mean that he is now one of just four people from across the UK to be chosen as a finalist for a royal award at The Prince’s Trust & Samsung Celebrate Success Awards.
The Oscar-style ceremony, hosted by Ant and Dec, recognises the achievements of young people supported by The Trust who have succeeded against the odds, improved their chances in life and had a positive impact on their local community.
Among the celebrity guests will be actor Kevin Spacey, X Factor judge Simon Cowell, actress Gemma Arterton and Arsenal legend and World Cup winner Thierry
Henry, who will come together to congratulate the young people on their achievements. Singers Ella Henderson and James Bay will also be performing at the event.
Steven is up for the Samsung Young Achiever of the Year Award, which recognises young people who have struggled through unimaginable difficulties to transform their lives.
Trapped indoors by debilitating depression and social anxiety, Steve tried to take his own life twice. With The Prince’s Trust, he found hope and began taking his first positive steps forward.
Growing up in a difficult home, Steve couldn’t cope with his surroundings and was placed in care aged nine. He was then sent to a residential school for boys with behaviour problems, fell in with the wrong crowd and found solace in drink and drugs. This led to trouble with the police and his life began to spin out of control.
“I thought my life was meaningless and kept myself shut off from others to feel safe,” he says.
Then Steve, from Northampton, saw a Prince’s Trust volunteer outside his local Jobcentre and decided to join the Team programme at Tresham College.
He saw it as his last chance. He found his first week very challenging but with the Team Leader’s guidance he was able to adjust to the 12-week personal development course,
which gives unemployed young people the skills and confidence to find work.
Steve’s progression was noticeable on the one-week residential, where he started to reflect on himself and what his future might hold, take on feedback and responsibility for his own actions.
By the end of the course, he hadn’t missed a single day and was able to tell his very emotional personal story to an audience of 90.
He had embraced opportunities to grow while becoming more independent.
Younger team members looked up to him as a leader and role model – a position Steve clearly enjoyed, leading him to return as a volunteer for more than a year afterwards.
“I couldn’t believe how much my life moved on while I was on Team and wanted to do something to help other young people who needed it as much as I had done,” he says.
Steve is now in full-time employment with Barclaycard and his confidence is still strengthening.
The Prince’s Trust & Samsung Celebrate Success Awards, now in their eleventh year, will be held on 12th March at London’s Leicester Square Odeon. This is the national final following a series of regional award ceremonies which took place across the country at the end of 2014.