Alexi, 18, won’t let anything get in the way of achieving her dreams. After becoming homeless at just 16, she moved into our young people service in Greenwich and focused her energy into studying. We caught up with her as she prepares herself for university life after receiving an offer from Oxford.  

“People told me that my circumstances would hold me back but that made me even more determined to succeed.” 

It feels like all the hard work is paying off and I can finally see my future ahead of me. But it wasn’t always like this. We weren’t well off growing up. I shared a room with two siblings in a small flat. However, even from an early age, I knew I was academic. 

“When I was 16 my mum, who had always struggled with mental health issues, left me to move abroad. She passed away after she’d moved away, and I was alone in the flat. Eventually I was kicked out by her boyfriend. There was nowhere stable for me to go so I slept on different sofas every night. I didn’t know what to do.

It wasn’t until I came into Single Homeless Project’s Young People’s services that I finally found stability

It wasn’t until I came to Single Homeless Project's Young People’s services that I finally found stability. I didn’t want my situation to affect my studies. Throughout this turbulent time, school was the one constant I had, and I knew I had to keep studying to give myself a future that had almost been taken away from me. People told me that my circumstances would hold me back but that made me even more determined to succeed.” 

When Alexi was in sixth form college, she knew she wanted to go to uni. The previous instability of her home life wasn’t going to hold her back even if it meant working harder than she ever had before. 

“I knew I had to put in the hours to get into uni. When my English teacher suggested applying to Oxford to do English, I knew I had to go for it. It would be the ultimate way to say that self-belief and hard grind can get you anywhere. 

I was so nervous about the interviews, but I came out of them feeling so inspired and excited about my subject. I knew it was the right place for me. When I got the offer, I was so happy. It felt amazing. I’m now determined to work even harder than before to make sure I get the predicted grades I need” 

“My future is looking really bright. I want other young people in my position to know that with the right support and self-belief, your past doesn’t need to hold you back.”