For a young person who has spent much of their life homeless, Aiden has a special skill; a small ritual that helps him start each new day on the right side of the bed.
“I have been in and out of home since I was 13… you’re pretty much fending for yourself. It’s easy to move out of home but it is so hard to manage. It is such a big shock when you become completely independent,” Aiden said.
“I make my bed every single day. I did an internship with Ibis Hotels and I learnt hotel style… now I can make it really well. A lot of people are shocked when I tell them that I can make my bed like that.”
Growing up amid domestic violence, Aiden had a “tough upbringing” and “struggled with addiction” from a young age, but since being connected with BYS, the 18-year-old has gone from strength to strength and is beginning to work through the early markers of adulthood.
“It (addiction) was such a hard thing to manage… you have no support,” he said.
“BYS changed my life. Since they came on the scene I’ve been clean of hard drugs for 10 months, which means I’ve been able to get things rolling quicker.”
Now Aiden’s perfected his bed making skills, he is moving towards an important rite of passage most of us take for granted.
“I want my car license… that will be a big milestone for me. It will mean so much more independence and being able to get myself to and from work.”
After clocking up 40 hours of supervised practice behind the wheel on his learners license, bit by bit Aiden’s getting closer to hitting 100 driving hours.
“When I was on the streets I got nothing done… I would never have the resources to be able to get my driving hours up on my own… without BYS, young people like me wouldn’t be able to get past the tricky part of starting adulthood.
“If I had been connected to BYS years ago, my story would be different… Just having that realisation that I can make a change in life.
“Now I would like to go travelling. I really want to get my license because I want to see everything… I don’t want to go by plane, I want to drive.”