Sanah’s story

Age 21

Living in Pakistan, Sanah had her life planned out at just 18. With dreams of pursuing accounting and securing her future through education, she seemed destined for success. However, fate took a drastic turn when she discovered her family had arranged her marriage, altering her path entirely.

Forced to move to a new country, learn a foreign language, and face the challenges of a marriage she didn’t choose, Sanah’s dreams of education and independence seemed distant. Despite the initial promises of a better future abroad, her reality turned bleak as she found herself trapped in an abusive relationship far from home.

After enduring 1.5 years of hardship and battling depression, Sanah found the courage to break free and seek refuge in Birmingham. Determined to reclaim her life and pursue her aspirations, she turned to Sport 4 Life for support.

Desiring to resume her pursuits from where she left off in Pakistan, Sanah aimed to reengage in education and establish herself in a job. Her quest commenced at a nearby Job Centre, where she encountered Lincoln, her newly assigned mentor from Sport 4 Life. She shared her lack of prior experience and employment history with him. Sanah understood that her journey ahead required laying a strong foundation and diligently working her way up the ladder.


Step 1: Building Foundations
Understanding the importance of gaining practical skills and experience, Lincoln enrolled Sanah in a Sport 4 Life employment programme with KFC (HATCH). Through this initiative, Sanah not only acquired valuable employability skills but also earned certifications in customer service and food hygiene, laying the groundwork for her professional journey.

Step 2: Exploring Opportunities
Sanah pursued additional qualifications, including a fully-funded SIA certification for security work. This proactive approach allowed her to open doors to employment avenues, increasing her chances of securing stable employment.

Step 3: Achieving Independence
With newfound confidence and qualifications in hand, Sanah secured a full-time position at a food establishment, marking a significant milestone in her journey towards independence. Empowered by her success, she embarked on the next phase of her adventure – finding permanent housing and pursuing higher education.


Reflecting on her transformational journey, Sanah credits Lincoln and Sport 4 Life for more than just employment support. “Lincoln didn’t just try to push me into a job, he helped me build my confidence, meet new people, explore new opportunities and open as many doors as possible”

As Sanah looks ahead to the next chapter of her life – exploring university opportunities, discovering new cities, and embracing fresh possibilities – she does so with a newfound sense of hope and empowerment. ““I used to feel vulnerable, but now I tell myself it’s going to be alright. It’s important to remain strong”