Matt, 21 from Gloucester, endured a troubled childhood and was moved into foster care when he was 15.

Scared to leave his room and missing his younger brother, Matt felt like he didn’t deserve a place in the world. He became engulfed with depression, self-harmed and was later diagnosed with gender identity disorder.

I went through years of trying to tell myself that my gender identity disorder was a phase that I’d grow out of.

"I lost so much confidence, but in the end I had to do something about the way I was feeling. I came out as genderqueer first, because I was scared I’d be rejected, but then eventually found the courage to come out as transgender.

It’s still a massive struggle because I'm still in the wrong body, but I can now see light at the end of the tunnel and every day that goes by is one step closer to being in the body I've always felt I should be in.

Hoping it would help him rebuild his confidence, social services suggested to Matt that he join Team – our 12-week programme that improves the confidence and employability prospects of unemployed young people. He learned a range of practical skills, gained qualifications and developed coping mechanisms to help him deal with his issues. He also became a lot more positive about himself and his future. 

Team was the beginning of my own self-discovery. Before, I felt like I wasn’t worthy of being part of someone’s life and I struggled to have a relationship of any kind with anyone. But The Prince’s Trust changed all that. I can now make friends and feel a lot more positive about myself and my life.

Since leaving Team, Matt has been very busy. He has gained his Level 2 in Youth Work, lives independently and works as both a healthcare assistant and a child minding assistant. He also volunteers at a local LGBT group, were he runs a gender group for young people to support them in their own journey of transitioning and is working towards completing a Duke of Edinburgh Award.

I know that I can achieve what I put my mind to and I never give up without a fight. I have so much motivation to conquer the world, be who I want to be and follow my dreams. I want to let other people know that you don’t have to suffer in silence – you’re not alone.

He plans to complete his transition to male and study social work at university before travelling the world and setting up a business supporting young transgender people through their transition.