Sandra and Neville’s Story

Sandra and Peter had a created a loving family home for themselves and their children and knew they could help more young people to thrive, if only they had the space. Living in a three-bedroom home with two children of their own, meant they just didn’t have the capacity for anyone else to live in the main house.

They went about making it possible and received a Kids Under Cover Studio, which was built in their backyard. Over the 7 years the studio was in use, the family fostered three different young people who lived in the space at different times.

“It’s simple, without the studio we wouldn’t have been able to care for the young people. It has been a really important part of our lives and theirs,” says Sandra.

Having the studio was a win-win situation. The young people who were in Sandra and Peter’s care were cared for, but no one had to share.

“Looking back, it gave us space and likewise, space for the teenagers to have their own independence and responsibility. They were going through a lot, so the studio meant they had a calming space to go and regulate themselves,” Sandra explains.

The family are still in close contact with Neville, who was one of the young people who lived in the studio.

We spoke to Neville about where he is now and his experience living with a Kids Under Cover Studio. He now has two children, has a house and is a carpenter’s assistant. 

“Despite having experienced trauma in his earlier life, he is doing really well. He is a fantastic father,” Sandra tells us.

“Before living in the studio, I was bouncing around foster care places,” Neville recalls.

After experiencing this trauma and instability, Neville came into the loving care of Sandra and her husband and lived in a Kids Under Cover Studio in their backyard.

“The studio provided stability. It also gave me an opportunity to live within a family situation, which still influences me today. It was a real eye opener, the family I became a part of was very different to my own family. They taught me a lot.”

It’s wonderful to hear from both Sandra and Neville, that the Kids Under Cover studio supported them to forge a lasting connection.

“Sandra, her husband and their children are the Godparents of my children. We all consider each other as family, and they go out of their way to help me. I am forever grateful for what Kids Under Cover did by providing the studio. It allowed me to gain five more people into my family. I’ve now known them for 21 years,” Neville tells us.

Not long ago, another young person who lived in their studio reached out to thank Sandra and Peter for their support all those years ago.

“He said he was really grateful for his time as part of our family and that he now understands he gave us some grief while living in the studio. He said he is doing really well and also has children of his own.”

Sandra looks back fondly on her time with a Kids Under Cover Studio and the diverse experiences that came with it. With the support of the studio, she is proud of the role she played in helping these young people thrive into the adults they are today.