Sean, 29, from Ayr, worked various jobs over the years, including as a janitor, cleaner and school crossing patroller, but feeling lost, living with parents and with little money to spend made him miserable.  

After meeting his now wife, Sean felt he had to make a change so enrolled in college, but he slipped into depression and ill health.

With his wife working as a nurse and giving birth to their daughter, Sean became a full-time dad which gave him something to be proud of and he began to feel healthier and happier.

But his work situation was still causing him to feel low.

Sean said: “I did different jobs, struggled to save money and although I was happy with my relationship, I was miserable. I wasn’t going anywhere in life and my mental health began to steadily decrease. My self-worth was also low as I began to doubt if I was good enough or if I’ll ever achieve what I want.

“Looking after my daughter was something that made me really proud, but I was still down as I was on Universal Credit for the first time, meanwhile my wife was out working and saving Covid patients. I started to say to myself ‘what if anything happens to her, what will I do for money’ so that made me realise I had to try and do something about it.”

In the back of his mind, Sean had always wanted to run his own business selling products that he enjoys and is passionate about. A keen gamer, Sean knew there were many people out there with a similar hobby. Determined to give it a try, he reached out to The Prince’s Trust. Although it was during lockdown, The Trust was running its Enterprise course online which was a perfect fit for Sean.

He completed the course, which included creating his business plan to open an online shop, Top-Hatted Hamster Games, selling gaming merchandise including Dungeon and Dragons, Zombicide, Batman Miniatures, Resident Evil boardgame, Marvel Crisis as well as hobby supplies. As well as gaining the confidence and knowledge needed to set up his business, Sean also successfully applied for a grant from The Trust which enabled him to buy his first batch of stock.

I wasn’t sure if I could receive help from The Trust at my age and so I was flattered when they called me young! Doing the Enterprise has had such a positive impact on my life. I feel good about myself and feel if I can set a goal like this at my age with all the barriers I have, then I can do anything, and so can other young people in Scotland. In five years, I want to be in a position to give other young people jobs and even hopefully open a shop.