Over the past few years, Aisha Butler’s story has been synonymous with that of The Door. From teenage tearaway to Christian convert, from school truant to apprentice, from aggressive young person to compassionate youth worker we’ve watched her grow, change and develop. Here she reflects on her present and future.
I didn’t think I would be back at The Door this soon! When I finished my admin apprenticeship at The Door in 2012, I knew I wanted to come back as a youth worker someday. I returned in April 2013 so excited but very nervous at the same time. I remember my very first shift and I felt out of my comfort zone but as time went on I began to settle in. I noticed as months went by I started to enjoy it more and more. Relationships with young people grew, I was learning new ways to be better from the others Youthworkers (David and James) and I even started to learn more about myself.
Just like any job it definitely has it’s challenges though. I had no idea what was around the corner but I was excited to grow as a youth worker and I would begin to wonder “what’s coming next?” One of the challenging parts was when new young people came in, a lot of them were my sister’s friends. Although some thought of me as ‘Chante’s sister’ I would make a joke of it and remind them I had a name. It has its benefits because I knew some of them already.
Some more months went by and again relationships grew. But then I learnt I would be leaving again soon – I will be going on maternity leave in June! When telling the news to young people I was actually surprised that they were quite excited to hear I was expecting. Not a Shift goes by when a person shows an interest, I love that they care. I even had a young person surprise me with a gift for the baby and some said they are sad that I’ll be leaving. But I plan on coming back, we never know what’s going to happen but in between my time away I will be coming in to visit everyone and to spend time in the drop -in with the young people. I’m sad to be leaving but I can’t wait to come back and for everyone to meet my baby.