'When I first found out I was pregnant, I felt mixed emotions. I didn’t know what I was going to do. I did have hopes and dreams for the future that changed when I fell pregnant, but I still wanted to do something.'
After she had her son, Kirsten Cotton (19) from Waterlooville in Hampshire went on to complete college and gain full-time employment.
She now wants to help other young mums realise that they don’t have to give up on their ambitions when their baby comes along.
Her story was broadcast on ITV News Meridian (W) on Thursday 13th August.
‘I had Billy when I was 16,’ explains Kirsten.
‘My message is that you can still succeed in life with a young child. You can still make your dreams come true.
‘After I had Billy I went to college and did travel and tourism for a year. I then went on to do health and social care while working part-time.
‘When I finished college I became a full-time youth work apprentice.
‘I wouldn’t advise a young person to get pregnant, but if they did, they just need to know their life isn’t over.'
With Fixers, Kirsten has helped to create a booklet, which tells her own story and offers support and information to other young mums or mums-to-be.
Click below to see the booklet.
Siobhan Down from Yellow Brick Road Projects also appears in the broadcast in support of Kirsten’s campaign.
‘Find a mentor,’ Siobhan advises.
‘Someone a bit further down the road, who has a child in pre-school.
‘They’ve been through everything and can give you that support.
‘Don’t give up on your dream. It’s still there, just keep going.’
You can watch Kirsten's TV film at the top of this page.
To find other resources on this topic, and watch Fixers films, click on the image below.